Should men undergo MRI before prostate biopsy – CON

Eric H. Kim, Gerald L. Andriole

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Prostate magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is increasingly used prior to biopsy in response to the overdiagnosis and overtreatment of prostate cancer (CaP) associated with prostate-specific antigen (PSA) based screening. However, technical limitations in the conventional diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) sequences as well as the high degree of radiologist-to-radiologist variability in interpreting prostate MRI result in inadequate accuracy. Specifically, the insufficient negative predictive value (NPV) of prostate MRI (76%–87%) does not allow biopsy to be omitted in the negative MRI setting. Additionally, the variable, and relatively low positive predictive value (PPV) of MRI (27%–44%) provides only an incremental improvement in risk prediction compared to readily available clinical tools such as the Prostate Cancer Prevention Trial risk calculator. This small benefit is likely confined to the minority of patients with positive MRI findings in a typically under-sampled region of the prostate (e.g., anterior lesions), which may be obviated by newer biopsy approaches and tools such as transperineal prostate biopsy and micro-ultrasound technology. With these considerations in mind, pre-biopsy prostate MRI in its current form is unlikely to provide a clinically significant benefit, and should not be considered as routine practice until its accuracy is sufficiently improved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)92-95
Number of pages4
JournalUrologic Oncology: Seminars and Original Investigations
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2023


  • Biopsy
  • MRI
  • Prostate cancer
  • Prostate-specific antigen


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