Researchers Identify which prostate cancers are lethal before surgery.

Researchers report a new analytical method to improve the detention of lethal prostate cancer. Based upon a small scale biopsy sample the method promises more accurately identifying men who need surgery from those who do not. Despite the large number of yearly prostate cancer cases 98.6% will be alive 5 years following diagnosis according to the National Cancer Institute. Even though it may not be lethal many men die because it is so common.

Researchers carried out a pilot study testing a new way of pinpointing the minority of patients who have aggressive prostate cancer at the time of diagnosis which usually determines whether or not they will have surgery. Results were encouraging. Current procedures use a diagnostic biopsy. in which a needle is inserted into the organ at various locations, sometimes guide4d bu MRI and ultrasound.  The new method to augment pre-surgery results uses advanced genomic tools to analyze what doctors call “biopsy cores” .  In standard diagnostic biopsies. the tissue collected in these cones, usually a dozen, is examined and assigned an overall grade called a Gleason score, based on changes in glandular architecture.core of 6 or lower is usually interpreted as a cancer that is slow growing or “indolent.” However, some men with borderline Gleason scores undergo surgery and are found to have aggressive cancers. At other times men with high Geason scores may be found to have indolent cancers when surgery is performed.

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