Prostate Biopsy for Active Surveillance: Managing Low-Risk Prostate Cancer

Active surveillance is an approach to managing prostate cancer that involves closely monitoring of the disease rather than immediately pursuing active treatment. This strategy is often considered for men with low-risk or slow-growing prostate cancers, where the cancer is not causing significant symptoms or posing an immediate threat to their health.


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Active surveillance is often considered if you have low-risk or slow-growing prostate cancer. Instead of immediately opting for active treatment, such as surgery or radiation therapy, if you are on active surveillance you will need to  undergo regular monitoring to assess the behavior of your cancer over time.


Here are key aspects of active surveillance for prostate cancer:


  • Monitoring

Instead of initiating immediate treatment, if you are on active surveillance you need to undergo regular monitoring, which typically includes periodic prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood tests, digital rectal exams (DRE), and sometimes repeat prostate biopsies.


  • PSA (prostate-specific antigen) Testing

PSA is a protein produced by your prostate, and elevated levels may indicate the presence of prostate cancer. Regular PSA testing helps track changes over time.


  • Digital Rectal Exam (DRE)

A digital rectal exam involves a physical examination of the prostate gland through your rectum. Changes in the size or texture of the prostate may be indicative of cancer progression.


  • Repeat Biopsies

Some active surveillance protocols include repeat prostate biopsies to assess changes in the cancer’s characteristics and determine if there is any progression.


  • Treatment Deferral

Treatment is deferred until there is evidence of disease progression, at which point active treatment options may be reconsidered.


In the context of active surveillance, a prostate biopsy may be performed as part of the monitoring process. Active surveillance is considered for men who meet specific criteria, such as having low-grade cancer, low PSA levels, and a small tumor volume. It is a strategy aimed at avoiding unnecessary treatment-related side effects, such as incontinence or impotence, which can impact your quality of life.


It will be essential for you if you are on active surveillance to have regular follow-up appointments with your healthcare team to assess the cancer’s behavior over time. If there are signs of disease progression during active surveillance, a shift to active treatment may be recommended.


The decision to pursue active surveillance varies and will depend on you, and healthcare professionals will need to carefully consider factors such as your age, overall health, and preferences. Regular communication between you and your healthcare team is very important to make informed decisions about ongoing management.


If you experience symptoms of problems in your prostate, talk to a medical provider that could help with the proper diagnosis of your condition. Further diagnostic tests may be recommended and/or a prostate biopsy procedure may be needed. You can schedule an appointment with Doral Health and Wellness Urology Center’s best urologist in Brooklyn and inquire about how a prostate biopsy is done. Our specialists will work with you and help you understand how this procedure is done. To schedule an appointment, please visit us at 1797 Pitkin Avenue, Brooklyn, New York 11212 or call 1-347-384-5690. You can also visit our website at