The urologist’s learning curve of “in-bore” magnetic resonance-guided prostate biopsy

Barak Rosenzweig*, Tomer Drori, Orit Raz, Gil Goldinger, Gadi Shlomai, Dorit E. Zilberman, Moshe Shechtman, Jacob Ramon, Zohar A. Dotan, Orith Portnoy

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: The combination of multi-parametric MRI to locate and define suspected lesions together with their being targeted by an MRI-guided prostate biopsy has succeeded in increasing the detection rate of clinically significant disease and lowering the detection rate of non-significant prostate cancer. In this work we investigate the urologist’s learning curve of in-bore MRI-guided prostate biopsy which is considered to be a superior biopsy technique. Materials and methods: Following Helsinki approval by The Chaim Sheba Medical Center ethics committee in accordance with The Sheba Medical Center institutional guidelines (5366-28-SMC) we retrospectively reviewed 110 IB-MRGpBs performed from 6/2016 to 1/2019 in a single tertiary center. All patients had a prostate multi-parametric MRI finding of at least 1 target lesion (prostate imaging reporting and data system [PI-RADS] score ≥ 3). We analyzed biopsy duration and clinically significant prostate cancer detection of targeted sampling in 2 groups of 55 patients each, once by a urologist highly trained in IB-MRGpBs and again by a urologist untrained in IB-MRGpBs. These two parameters were compared according to operating urologist and chronologic order. Results: The patients’ median age was 68 years (interquartile range 62–72). The mean prostate-specific antigen level and prostate size were 8.6 ± 9.1 ng/d and 53 ± 27 cc, respectively. The mean number of target lesions was 1.47 ± 0.6. Baseline parameters did not differ significantly between the 2 urologists’ cohorts. Overall detection rates of clinically significant prostate cancer were 19%, 55%, and 69% for PI-RADS 3, 4 and 5, respectively. Clinically significant cancer detection rates did not differ significantly along the timeline or between the 2 urologists. The average duration of IB-MRGpB targeted sampling was 28 ± 15.8 min, correlating with the number of target lesions (p < 0.0001), and independent of the urologist’s expertise. Eighteen cases defined the cutoff for the procedure duration learning curve (p < 0.05). Conclusions: Our data suggest a very short learning curve for IB-MRGpB-targeted sampling duration, and that clinically significant cancer detection rates are not influenced by the learning curve of this technique.

Original languageEnglish
Article number169
JournalBMC Urology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 2021


  • In-bore MRI
  • Learning curve
  • Prostate MRI
  • Prostate biopsy


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