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Prostate MRI

The prostate is a walnut-size gland that is an integral part of the male reproductive system. Ultrasound and MRI are the most commonly used diagnostic techniques to image the prostate gland.

The primary reason for performing a MRI scan of the prostate is the evaluation of prostate cancer. A prostate MRI is usually performed after confirmation of cancer following a prostate biopsy. The scan is designed to determine if the cancer has spread beyond the walls of the prostate, or if it is confined solely to the gland itself.

Occasionally, MRI of the prostate is used to evaluate other prostate problems, including prostatitis (an infection of the prostate), prostate abscess, or an enlarged prostate (benign prostatic hyperplasia).

3.0T MRI – No endorectal coil required

3.0T offers a substantially better patient experience for prostate MRI compared to commonly available 1.5T MRI. The standard 1.5T MRI requires the insertion of an endorectal probe throughout the 45-minute scan, which is uncomfortable for some patients. With the higher strength of False Creek Healthcare’s 3.0T MRI, an endorectal coil or probe is no longer required to be inserted into the patient’s rectum, resulting in a substantially more comfortable patient experience while maintaining the high degree of image quality required to make a confident diagnosis.

What to expect

One of our expert technologists will escort you into the MRI scanning room, containing a table and a large, circular device called a gantry. Your technologist will have you lie on the padded table and make sure that you’re comfortable. You will be asked to lie very still and hold your breath for a short time during the scan in order to minimize any body movement and produce a clear image.

Depending on the specific exam, a contrast solution may be administered through an IV to help improve the accuracy of the examination. It is important that you inform your doctor beforehand if you any allergies, or if you have previously had an allergic reaction to a contrast solution.

During the scan, you may hear a humming or buzzing noise, which can be quite loud, but you will not experience any other unusual sensations. You may feel the table move while images are being taken of specific locations of your body. The technologist will monitor you during the entire exam through a window and will communicate with you by intercom.

Specific details of your upcoming examination will be explained fully by one of our MRI technologists or by your physician.

How long will the test last?

The entire scan may take up to 45 to 90 minutes, depending on the specific details of your exam.

After Your Prostate MRI

Our fellowship trained, sub-specialty radiologists will carefully analyze your MRI images and provide a report to your physician. Once they have received the report your physician will then discuss the results with you. The Radiologists who read your scans are trained and specialized in analyzing Prostate MRI scans. The radiologists who read our Prostate MRI scans are Dr. Harris, Dr. Chang, and Dr. Pang.

Your technologist will also provide you with a CD or USB containing the images from your scan when you leave.

Next Steps

A prostate MRI may ONLY be requested by a urologist. Download an MRI requisition have it completed by your urologist.

If you do not have a urologist yet, or cannot see one in a timely manner, False Creek Healthcare Urologists are available for expedited consultation.

If you’re ready to explore your diagnostic needs, contact us to request an appointment.

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