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New type of biopsy detected retired JMU professor’s previously missed prostate cancer

September is National Prostate Cancer Awareness Month and a former JMU professor is sharing his...
September is National Prostate Cancer Awareness Month and a former JMU professor is sharing his story about a new approach that helped diagnose his prostate cancer in time to treat it.(WHSV)
Published: Aug. 29, 2021 at 7:10 PM EDT
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HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV) - September is National Prostate Cancer Awareness Month and a former JMU professor is sharing his story about a new approach that helped diagnose his prostate cancer in time to treat it.

Four years ago, Dr. James Kidd received an MRI and a Transrectal biopsy to check for prostate cancer. Both tests came back negative.

“Mine is aggressive, it’s an aggressive cancer because of the lack of finding out earlier, but that’s hindsight,” said Kidd.

Later a prostate specific antigen test (PSA) told a different story.

“A year later my doctor again did a PSA and it had jumped dramatically, at that time it was a PSA of 20, that’s very high,” said Kidd.

Kidd decided it was time to get another biopsy, but found the traditional transrectal approach uncomfortable, as well as posing a five to seven percent risk of infection which can lead to sepsis and hospitalization. After doing some research of his own, Kidd found Dr. Matthew Allaway, a urologist at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center’s Urology Associates in Cumberland, Maryland. Dr. Allaway created a safer, more effective kind of biopsy that he has been performing for the past five years.

“We knew a lot of the cancers we were missing were in areas hard to reach with this transrectal approach, so I decided one day, ‘I’m not going to do another transrectal biopsy, I have to do a better job’ and the best approach I felt was going to be entering through the perineum, the patch of skin between the scrotum and the anus,” said Dr. Allaway.

Allaway created the PrecisionPoint™ Transperineal Access System. It’s a device that requires two needle entries, eliminates the risk of the traditional approach and access harder to reach areas of the prostate.

“With transperineal you fly your Biopsy needle in right and parallel with the anterior prostate, and the standard transrectal biopsy does not include actually sampling this anterior portion of the prostate,” said Allaway.

The transperineal biopsy found prostate cancer that Kidd’s previous biopsy and MRI had missed.

“We found a very high grade cancer in a very very difficult location of the prostate that would have never been sampled with existing techniques,” said Dr. Allaway.

After the procedure found the cancer, Kidd was able to begin treatments and continue living his life.

“I feel great, I am on a medication that goes along with what I’m doing, but I play golf five or six times a week and pretty much do whatever I wanna do,” said Kidd.

He recommends anyone in need of a biopsy for prostate cancer look for the nearest urologist that offers the transperineal approach.

The transperineal approach has grown significantly over the past five years, Dr. Allaway and his company Perineologic which makes the devices are hoping to make it the new standard in prostate cancer biopsies.

“The company and the technique is accelerating rapidly, despite COVID there will be over 36,000 men biopsied this year,” said Allaway.

You can learn more about the company and find a physician near you here.

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