Advancements improve prostate exams

Invivo Corp.’s advancements in clinical prostate solutions using magnetic resonance (MRI) can help target suspicious areas, make a diagnosis faster and more accurate and reduce prolonged discomfort for patients.

Invivo’s DynaCAD and DynaTRIM technology is the first commercially available product that, when used in conjunction with one another, can target specific areas of the prostate to reduce the number of core samples taken during the biopsy and help improve the accuracy of the procedure.

Invivo is headquartered in the Netherlands, but the company has significant North American operations in Pewaukee and in Gainesville, Fla.

“In some cases, and with traditional methods, patients may receive a blood test, a digital rectal exam and multiple biopsies within a few days of each other, which can be extremely uncomfortable,” said Susan Reisker, product marketing manager at Invivo.

According to Reisker, if a patient’s PSA level, or prostate specific antigen, is considered high a patient will undergo a digital rectal exam, followed by a TRUS, a transrectal ultrasound, if there is still some level of suspicion. The TRUS is a transrectal biopsy that uses ultra sound technology as guidance, Reisker said.

“The problem with the TRUS is that it isn’t terribly focused on a particular area within the prostate,” she said. “That means that an urologist might take anywhere from 6 to 15 samples and needle sticks during the procedure. In addition, if the tests come back negative, traditionally they would draw more blood and repeat the process a few days later.”

But with Invivo’s DynaCAD software, urologists can work in conjunction with radiologists to use MRI technology to get a more accurate image of the prostate, Reisker said.

“Magnetic resonance can help identify specific areas of suspicion,” Reisker said. “By looking at the images on the screen during the exam, the urologist may only have to take two to four samples during the biopsy. It’s more targeted than a blind test, so there is a better chance of diagnosing it and patients can avoid multiple TRUS procedures.”

According to Reisker, DynaCAD, the software and DynaTRIM, the prostate interventional device, are not meant to replace traditional methods.

“The technology is really meant to supplement and provide another option for those difficult patients who aren’t getting the results they need from traditional methods,” Reisker said. “For those patients that have reoccurring or rising PSA levels but aren’t finding out why by receiving the traditional transrectal ultrasound exam, this is an alternative.”

Invivo was recently awarded the 2010 Gold Medical Design Excellence Award from Los Angeles-based Canon Communications LLC for its prostate solution technology. It’s the only awards program that exclusively recognizes contributions and advances in the design of medical products.

The company has integrated its prostate technology into large hospital systems and imaging centers in Europe and research universities including Johns Hopkins University and the University of Chicago.

According to Reisker, Invivo is currently marketing the project to other systems and imaging centers in the United States and the Milwaukee area.

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