Single focus of adenocarcinoma in the prostate biopsy specimen is not predictive of the pathologic stage of disease

R. Grady Bruce, William R. Rankin, Michael L. Cibull, Mary Kay Rayens, Evelyn R. Banks, David P. Wood

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Scopus citations


Objectives. To determine whether a very small focus of prostate cancer in a needle biopsy specimen correlates with organ-confined disease or with favorable disease parameters. Methods. Of 598 needle biopsies of the prostate performed from January 1990 through June 1994, 49 specimens (8.2%) contained a microscopic focus (less than 2 mm in length of the entire biopsy core specimen) of adenocarcinoma. For these 49 patients, the clinical and pathologic features were correlated. Results. Of these 49 patients, 27 (55.1%) underwent either radical prostatectomy, with or without pelvic lymph node dissection (26), or pelvic lymph node dissection alone (1). Seven of these 27 patients (25.9%) had extraprostatic disease: lymph node involvement (1), positive surgical margins (5), or seminal vesicle invasion (1). Ten of the 49 patients (20.4%) underwent radiotherapy, and 12 (24.5%) chose hormonal therapy. The pathologic stage for these 22 patients could not be ascertained. However, despite the limited amount of disease in the biopsy specimen, 2 patients treated with radiotherapy suffered a relapse (mean interval to recurrence, 11.5 months), and 3 patients treated with hormonal therapy (early or delayed) had bony metastasis at the time of diagnosis. Overall, 12 of the 49 patients (24.5%) had unfavorable disease (as defined by extraprostatic disease on pathologic specimen, relapse after radiotherapy, or bony metastasis at the time of diagnosis). Conclusions. These findings suggest that a microscopic focus of prostatic adenocarcinoma in a needle biopsy specimen, per se, does not predict the pathologic stage or the biologic behavior of a tumor.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)75-79
Number of pages5
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 1996

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Dr. Wood is supported by National Cancer Institute grant CA62238.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Urology


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