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An ultrasound and biopsy unit for NNUH

New ultrasound and biopsy unit

Spring 2009

£37,950 to provide a trans-rectal ultrasound and biopsy unit for the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital, with a further £5,000 contributed from the Norfolk and Waveney Prostate Cancer Support Group.

Prostate cancer is now the most common cancer in men, excluding simple skin cancers.  A trans-rectal ultrasound machine is essential equipment for all patients requiring a prostate biopsy. 

If a first biopsy is negative but further tests show that levels of the cancer marker PSA (prostate specific antigen) continue to rise, it is often necessary to repeat the biopsy.  The second session is more intensive than the standard first biopsy in the outpatient clinic.  Repeat biopsies are therefore often performed under a short general anaesthetic.  These would more sensibly be performed as a day case if a machine were available in the day unit.
The existing machine in the outpatient department is in constant use, and the machine in main theatre is fifteen years old.

A new machine will mean patients benefitting from only needing to attend hospital for a day visit rather than having to stay overnight. This will enable the waiting list to fall from over 8-10 weeks currently to a maximum target wait of two weeks.


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