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Saint Francis Hospital First in Memphis to Offer Specialized Prostate MRI Biopsy

Jan 24, 2017
New Study Reports Test Twice As Likely To Identify Cancer as Traditional Technique

(January 24, 2017 – Memphis, Tenn.)  A recent study in The Journal of the American Medical Association reports promising results from a more targeted way to biopsy the prostate.  The Urology Cancer Center at Saint Francis Hospital – Memphis is the first and only in the Memphis area to offer this specialized type of biopsy called MRI fusion biopsy.

The study indicates that images from MRI fusion biopsy can help improve biopsy results and significantly reduce the number of men undergoing unnecessary biopsies.   The study also reports that the MRI fusion biopsy is twice as likely to identify cancer as traditional techniques.

Two early warning signs of possible prostate cancer are a high level of prostate-specific antigen (PSA) in the bloodstream and an abnormal digital rectal exam. When either occurs, a prostate biopsy is usually done to see if that warning sign is being caused by prostate cancer.

Because this type of MRI fuses ultrasound images with high-resolution pictures of the prostate made by a newer technology called multi-parametric magnetic resonance imaging (MP-MRI). Prostate tumors show up on MP-MRI as dark spots. By adding MP-MRI images taken beforehand to the real-time ultrasound images, doctors can target suspicious regions of the gland while steering clear of healthy tissue.

“The MRI fusion biopsy has significantly improved the accuracy of diagnosing prostate cancer, the most common cancer in the American male,” said Walter Rayford, MD, PhD, MBA, Medical Director of  The Urology Cancer at Saint Francis Hospital – Memphis.

Last year, in the United States alone, there were over 180,000 new diagnoses of prostate cancer and more than 26,000 deaths from the disease, making it the second leading cause of cancer death in men.  Prostate cancer can be missed in 1 in 4 men by the current standard way of carrying out biopsy.

For more information on MRI fusion biopsy at Saint Francis Hospital – Memphis, call 901-765-1059.

The American Urological Association (AUA) and the Abdominal Radiology’s Prostate Cancer Disease-Focused Panel issued a joint consensus statement on the results of the study.

About Saint Francis Hospital-Memphis

Saint Francis Hospital-Memphis is a 479-bed full service hospital located at 5959 Park Avenue in Memphis, Tenn.  Offering a wide array of medical services, Saint Francis is noted for its many Centers of Excellence, including its Center for Surgical Weight Loss, Joint & Spine Center, Heart & Vascular Center, Sleep Center, Chest Pain Emergency Center, and Surgical Services including its Center for Robotic Surgery, Diabetes Center, and Cancer Center.   The hospital has been recognized for excellence of care by United Healthcare, CIGNA, Blue Cross/Blue Shield, and Aetna. Saint Francis Hospital serves as an academic training site for University of Tennessee Surgical, Family Practice, and Psychiatric Residents.  The hospital is accredited by the Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations, the nation’s oldest and largest hospital accreditation agency.  To learn more about Saint Francis Hospital, visit                     

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