Agent for BPH may help improve biopsy accuracy

June 17, 2005

Dutasteride (Avodart) appears to improve the accuracy of prostate biopsies by suppressing blood flow in benign tissue, allowing radiologists to better target cancer tissue using Doppler ultrasound-guided biopsy, according to a small pilot study.

Dutasteride (Avodart) appears to improve the accuracy of prostate biopsies by suppressing blood flow in benign tissue, allowing radiologists to better target cancer tissue using Doppler ultrasound-guided biopsy, according to a small pilot study.

The trial included 11 patients who took dutasteride before biopsy. Based on blood flow reduction, biopsy was performed on one patient after 1 week of taking the drug, eight patients after 2 weeks, and two patients after 3 weeks. Up to four targeted biopsies and six standard biopsies were performed on each patient, according to lead author Elizabeth Ives, MD, of Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, Philadelphia.

Prostate cancer was detected in four patients using the targeted biopsy method, while the standard method detected three of the four cancers, she said in a report at the American Roentgen Ray Society annual meeting in New Orleans.

"If we can reduce the benign blood flow, we're better able to see where the cancer tissue is located and detect cancer if it is present," Dr. Ives said. "If cancer is there and we find it on the first biopsy, these men can be diagnosed sooner and be spared from having to undergo a repeat biopsy."