The prostate gland is a male organ that sits just below the bladder and surrounds the tube that drains urine from the bladder, otherwise known as the urethra. The prostate gland serves to produce fluid that nourishes and transports sperm. As men age, the prostate gland can change and be prone to different conditions, including enlargement or cancer. If you are experiencing any symptoms of concern, please consult with your urologist.
At Raleigh Radiology, we work with both patients and urologists to help diagnose and treat these conditions.
What Are Common Prostate Issues?
The prostate is prone to two common conditions: enlarged prostate known as benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) and prostate cancer. Learn more about these conditions and some treatment options below.
What is BPH?
Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) is the common enlargement of the prostate in older men. When the prostate becomes enlarged, the gland grows bigger and presses more on the urethra and limits the flow of urine. This can cause urinary symptoms including difficulty starting or stopping, incomplete emptying as well as frequent urination. More than half of men over the age of 60 experience symptoms due to an enlarged prostate and this can worsen over time.
What Are Common Treatments For an Enlarged Prostate?
There are many treatment options for BPH, including medications, surgery, as well minimally invasive procedures. Prostate artery embolization (PAE) is a highly effective, minimally invasive option performed by an Interventional Radiologist. The procedure is performed using a tiny tube known as a catheter, which is placed into the arteries that supply the prostate. Very small particles are injected into the prostate arteries to decrease blood supply to the prostate, reducing its size. The reduction in size will help relieve pressure on the urethra and improve symptoms. Many patients get long-term relief from symptoms with minimal downtime. At Raleigh Radiology, our interventional radiologists will work closely with your urologist to determine the best treatment options for you.
What is Prostate Cancer?
Prostate cancer is one of the most common types of cancer in men, affecting nearly 60% of men over the age of 65. If the cancer is detected early while it’s still confined to the prostate gland, typically no serious harm is done. However, some types of prostate cancer can be aggressive and spread quickly.
Men with prostate cancer typically have an elevated prostate-specific antigen (PSA). A PSA test could help detect prostate cancer at an early stage—when it has a better chance of staying confined to the prostate and treated.
Get Answers to Your Prostate Concerns
A prostate MRI is a noninvasive procedure that can aid in the evaluation and diagnosis of problems within the prostate. MRI provides excellent image quality and does not use any radiation. Using a very powerful magnet, radio-waves and a computer, a prostate MRI can produce detailed images of the prostate gland. It is painless and has very few risks for the patient. You can resume normal activities (yes, even golf!) immediately after the exam. Prostate MRI is most often used to:
- Provide imaging guidance during a biopsy procedure
- Determine the stage of prostate cancer
- Verify whether cancer has spread outside the prostate gland
- Determine treatment plan for prostate cancer patients
A 3T prostate MRI delivers exceptionally sharp images better enabling your doctor to detect problems that might be otherwise difficult to see. 3T MRI can be used to acquire further detail about tumor detection, localization, and to inform risk assessment and treatment planning.
3T MRI prostate screening could be right for you if:
- You have an elevated or rising PSA
- You have an abnormal rectal exam
- You are at a high risk of developing prostate cancer (genetic or environmental factors)
- You have been treated for prostate cancer but your PSA is stable or rising
- You were treated for a prostate infection or inflammation but your PSA is still high
- You are on active surveillance
This exam is normally an outpatient procedure that takes less than an hour!
Prostate MRI at Raleigh Radiology
Raleigh Radiology offers prostate MRI at all locations. Call us at (919) 781-1437 to schedule your appointment today.