Author(s): Rietbergen JB, Kruger AE, Kranse R, Schrder FH, Rietbergen JB, Kruger AE, Kranse R, Schrder FH
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Abstract OBJECTIVES: Screening for prostate cancer to reduce the mortality and morbidity from this disease has become an important issue in recent years. Of all procedures used to diagnose prostate cancer, biopsy of the prostate is the cause of most complications. To evaluate the safety of the screening procedure, we have studied the complications and risk factors for complications within the screened population of the European Randomized Study of Screening for Prostate Cancer (ERSPC), Rotterdam section. METHODS: Between June 1994 and July 1996, 1687 transrectal ultrasound-guided systematic sextant biopsies were performed after screening 6198 men through prostate-specific antigen level, digital rectal examination, and transrectal ultrasonography. RESULTS: From these 1687 biopsies, 302 cases of prostate cancer were diagnosed. Mild complications such as hematuria and hematospermia were reported frequently with rates of 23.6\% and 45.3\%, respectively. More severe complications were far less frequently seen. Fever, usually of low grade, was seen after 4.2\% of biopsies. Seven men (0.4\%) were admitted to a hospital after biopsy. Risk factors for complications could not be identified. CONCLUSIONS: Review of the literature concerning transrectal biopsies of the prostate shows that the complication rates within this screened population are comparable to those reported within referred patients. The admittance rate is slightly lower. Transrectal ultrasound-guided systematic sextant biopsy of the prostate is a safe procedure for the diagnosis of prostate cancer within the general population; however, identification of risk factors for complications might further improve the safety of the screening procedure.
This article was published in Urology
and referenced in Journal of Cancer Science & Therapy