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Bryn Mawr Hospital offers a sophisticated new tool to help manage prostate cancer

Bryn Mawr Hospital September 29, 2014 News Releases

Bryn Mawr Hospital, part of Main Line Health, offers a new testing option for men with suspected prostate cancer. A prostate MRI (pelvic MRI with endorectal coil) can be used to obtain high quality images of the prostate gland, and represents an optimal method for visualizing the local anatomy and extent of the prostate cancer.

Because a prostate MRI helps physicians gain a more accurate understanding of the size and scope of the cancer, it can help patients avoid unnecessary testing and extensive treatment if the cancer is not advanced or aggressive in its current stage. This form of testing can also help to more accurately detect the exact location of the cancer, which can sometimes be difficult for physicians to pinpoint.

“Typically, a biopsy of a prostate will use 12 samples of tissue from different places where prostate cancer is usually found,” says David McGinnis, MD, Bryn Mawr Hospital urologist. “In some cases, the cancer isn’t where it’s typically supposed to be, and can show up in uncommon places within the prostate. The MRI can help surgeons and radiation therapists to map the treatment area, even if it’s located in a not-so-common place.”

When urologists suspect that a man has prostate cancer, but it is not fast-growing or life-threatening at that time, the physician and patient may decide together to monitor the cancer on a regular basis, rather than move forward with treatment. More and more prostate cancer is being managed this way. A prostate MRI, used in conjunction with regular check-ups and other new tools to assess cancer, such as genomic testing, can help physicians to monitor the growth and severity of the cancer.

“This MRI can also help us to find cancers that are not detected by biopsy and ultrasound,” says McGinnis. “If a man has a relatively high PSA that is rising faster than normal, and his biopsies have all been negative, the MRI helps us to detect whether or not cancer is present because of the quality of images it produces. If we do not see cancer, we would keep checking-up with the patient regularly and can avoid more biopsies than are necessary. If we see something on MRI, we can specifically target that area with MRI guidance.”

This type of prostate MRI is not widely available regionally or nationally. Main Line Health invested in new hardware, new software and extra training for the radiology staff in order to establish this program. “We are fortunate to have such a dedicated radiology team, with specialty training in MRI, who started this program,” adds McGinnis. “Most hospitals have MRIs, but the majority of university hospitals in the region don’t yet have this technology. The quality of the images is nothing short of spectacular.”

Currently, the prostate MRI is only offered at Bryn Mawr Hospital, but is available for referral by all Main Line Health urologists and physicians. For information about Main Line Health’s cancer services, please visit or call 1.866.CALL.MLH (1.866.225.5654).

About Bryn Mawr Hospital

Bryn Mawr Hospital, a member of Main Line Health, is a 287-bed, not-for-profit acute-care teaching hospital dedicated to helping the community stay well ahead on the path to lifelong health. Bryn Mawr Hospital has been named as one of the top six hospitals in the Philadelphia region and top 12 in the state of Pennsylvania by U.S. News & World Report’s Best Hospitals 2017–18, and is ranked as high-performing in the specialties of gastroenterology & GI surgery, geriatrics and orthopedics. U.S. News & World Report also ranked Bryn Mawr Hospital as high performing in the following procedures/conditions: COPD, colon cancer surgery, heart failure, hip replacement and knee replacement. Bryn Mawr Hospital has earned Magnet® designation for the third time for its superior nursing staff. Bryn Mawr Hospital’s Neuro-Cardiac Intensive Care Unit (NCICU) has also received the 2015–18 American Association of Critical-Care Nurses (AACN) Silver-level Beacon Award for Excellence for the second time. The National Institutes of Health Commission on Cancer has accredited our Cancer Center and our Comprehensive Breast Center has been accredited by The Joint Commission and the National Accreditation Program for Breast Centers. Bryn Mawr Hospital’s Bariatric Program has earned the MBSAQIP Accredited Comprehensive Center designation from the American Society of Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery. The hospital offers a full range of services, including cancer care, orthopedic care, cardiovascular care, behavioral health, maternity care, bariatric surgery, neurovascular and a level III neonatal intensive care unit, all aided by a dedicated team of health care professionals and innovative technologies. Through Bryn Mawr Hospital’s collaboration with the Jefferson Hospital for Neuroscience, the university-affiliated Neurovascular Center offers rapid access to advanced diagnostics and treatment options for stroke care. Bryn Mawr Hospital has also collaborated with Nemours/Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children to include round-the-clock pediatric care for the pediatric unit and in the pediatric emergency department with additional board-certified, fellowship trained pediatric emergency medicine physicians.


Bridget Therriault
Director, Communications
Office: 484.580.1025
Cell: 484.222.9154