The role of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) in prostate cancer evaluation is controversial and likely underestimated. Technological advances over the past 5 years have demonstrated that multiparametric MRI, including diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) and dynamic contrast-enhanced MRI, can evaluate the actual tumor burden of a newly diagnosed prostate cancer more accurately than sextant biopsy protocols. Tumor risk, defined by the D'Amico criteria, hence can be reevaluated by multiparametric MRI. As a result, there is increasing evidence that MRI before repeat or even initial biopsy can accurately select patients who require immediate biopsies and those in whom biopsy could be deferred. Also, a relationship between apparent diffusion coefficient ( ADC), calculated from DWI, and Gleason score was found. Thus, MRI before biopsy helps to detect high-grade tumors to target biopsies within areas of low ADC values. To achieve good targeting accuracy, transrectal ultrasound (TRUS)-MRI image registration is necessary. Threedimensional deformable registration is sufficiently accurate to match TRUS and MRI volumes with a topographic precision of 1 mm. Real-time MRI-guided biopsy is another technique under evaluation. Both approaches will allow for increasing acceptance of focal therapies, should these techniques be validated in the future.
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