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Breakthrough Prostate Cancer Diagnostics

NEW YORK, June 19, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- More precise prostate cancer diagnostics could be right around the corner, thanks to evolving MRI capabilities. Netherlands MRI and Urogenital disease specialist, Dr. Jelle Barentsz, is making significant headway in improving MRI technology to accurately diagnose and stage prostate cancer tumors with a success rate of 90 percent.

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Detected through a simple blood test, a spike in PSA level is typically the first indicator of the potential presence of prostate cancer. A prostate cancer biopsy is then performed through a series of 12, sometimes painful, needle insertions. Despite these procedures, current prostate cancer staging abilities are somewhat limited and the needle biopsies do not always clearly define the tumor's boundaries.

Dr. David Samadi, leading U.S. prostate cancer surgeon, details how Dr. Barentsz's MRI advancements could significantly improve the ability to accurately define the degree of a man's prostate cancer. "With current diagnostics I don't get a perfect picture of the prostate cancer until I see it first-hand during robotic prostate surgery. The microscopic clarity of Dr. Barentsz's new MRI technology may soon afford the opportunity to truly see the prostate, the cancer, and its borders before surgery is performed," Dr. Samadi explained.

More accurate MRI imaging has the potential to improve prostate cancer diagnosis in two major ways. First, needle biopsy could be reduced to one or two highly targeted insertions based on exact imaging of the tumor location. Second, more precise imaging could reduce the need for biopsy in men where no prostate abnormalities are visualized.

Some critics argue that routine PSA screening leads to unnecessary biopsies as not all elevated PSA levels are caused by prostate cancer. Dr. Barentsz believes prostate cancer biopsies could be reduced by as much as two-thirds with his more accurate imaging.

At the end of 2011, Dr. Samadi traveled to the Netherlands to work side-by-side with Dr. Barentsz at The Dutch Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Center. During his stay, Dr. Samadi performed multiple, live robotic prostatectomy surgeries to train local experts on his custom Samadi Modified Advanced Robotic Technique (SMART) surgery

"While in the Netherlands I witnessed the exciting potential of Dr. Barentsz's advanced MRI imaging," Dr. Samadi said. "We were able to combine the power of his technology with the precision of my SMART surgery to yield very successful results. I truly believe that his efforts will have a great impact on the ability to diagnose and eliminate prostate cancer for patients globally."

Dr. David Samadi is Vice Chairman of the Department of Urology and Chief of Robotics and Minimally Invasive Surgery at Mount Sinai Medical Center. From his practice in New York City, Dr. Samadi often travels overseas to "treat and teach" his SMART surgery procedure and routinely welcomes international patients for surgery in the U.S. To date, over 4,000 men have benefited from the life-saving results of his skilled prostate removal surgery.

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