What to expect after a prostate biopsy

November 10, 2015

Dr. Koushik Shaw and the Austin Urology Institute team are experts on the prostate. One of the more common questions we’re asked is what happens after a prostate biopsy.

See also: Prostate Cancer – Stages, Risks, Diagnosis, Treatment, and Prevention

A prostate biopsy is usually performed when there is a high suspicion of prostate cancer (based on elevated PSA or abnormal prostate exam). It is a 20-30 minute in-office procedure, done under ultrasound. The probe is placed rectally, and is not much larger than the size of our fingers. The prostate is numbed using Lidocaine. You should not feel anything after we numb the prostate. A sampling of tissue is collected from different areas of the prostate.  This tissue is then sent to a pathologist to be examined. You will be prescribed an antibiotic to take before, during and after the procedure to reduce the chance of infection. Other precautions used before the biopsy to lower infection rate include an enema and clear liquid diet the night before the procedure. Some things you may experience after the prostate biopsy include:

  • Light rectal bleeding, can be present in the stool
  • Blood in the urine
  • Blood in the semen
  • Burning with urination
  • Pain or discomfort in the groin

These are minor issues that will resolve in 1-2 days. If you experience fever (greater than 101.4 F), chills, nausea, vomiting, or significant burning with urination, immediately call our office or go to the emergency room. These symptoms can indicate a prostate infection, and it is important that you receive treatment with IV antibiotics. Please let us know if you have been on any prolonged antibiotics in the past or have traveled out of the country.

Other things to keep in mind after the biopsy:

  • No intercourse for one week
  • Avoid straining with bowel movements and heavy lifting for 48 hours
  • Avoid baths, pools, lakes, or hot tubs for one week
  • If you are on a blood thinner, we will discuss when to stop and restart this in relation to your biopsy