A prostate biopsy is a procedure in which several samples of tissue are taken from the prostate. The samples can then be examined under the microscope to assess whether cancerous cells are present.
You will be asked to lie down on your left side and be given a local anaesthetic to reduce discomfort. An ultrasound probe will be placed in your rectum. A very fine needle is inserted inside the probe and is used to take the tissue samples.
You will feel a slight jolt when the needle is fired, but the procedure usually uncomfortable rather than painful.
After the test, you will be given antibiotics to reduce the risk of infection and will return home. It is important that you drink a lot of water to flush out the small amount of blood from the prostate and guard against infection.
The results of a prostate biopsy are available within days.