Email updates

Keep up to date with the latest news and content from BMC Research Notes and BioMed Central.

Open Access Short Report

Patient information leaflets for Transrectal Ultrasound guided prostate biopsy: Results of North Thames deanery survey

Iqbal Shergill*, Kishore Bahl, Muhammad Farjad, Claire Phipps and George Fowlis

Author Affiliations

Department of Urology, North Middlesex University Hospital NHS Trust, London, UK

For all author emails, please log on.

BMC Research Notes 2010, 3:27  doi:10.1186/1756-0500-3-27

Published: 28 January 2010



We evaluated the quality of patient information leaflets for Trans-Rectal Ultrasound guided prostate biopsies (TRUS-Bx) in North Thames region. TRUS-Bx information leaflets were requested from 24 hospitals in the region. All hospitals were contacted by telephone, and non-responders were followed-up by postal survey. Leaflets received were evaluated for a clear description of the procedure, directions to TRUS-Bx location, a clear description of the procedure, contact for queries/concerns, information about preparation prior to procedure, information about regular medication, information on how to obtain results, instructions for follow-up arrangements, analgesia used and risk of morbidity/mortality. Additionally, the leaflets were evaluated for diagrams to clarify the procedure and the anatomy, and sources of additional information, such as reference to published articles or prostate cancer patient support groups/internet websites.


In summary, a total of 17 leaflets (77%) were received. Of these, the majority (94%) had a clear description of the procedure, contact for queries/concerns (82%), information about preparation prior to TRUS-Bx (71%). Directions to TRUS-Bx location (29%), and analgesia used (35%), was very poorly described, and information on obtaining results and follow-up arrangements were described in only 12 (71%) leaflets. Complications such as risks of infection, haematuria, haematospermia and rectal bleeding, were generally explained (71%-76% of leaflets), urinary retention was mentioned in only 5 (29%) leaflets and mortality in only 1 case. Descriptive diagrams of the procedure and prostate anatomy were very rarely used, and sources of additional information were limited to 1 published article and reference to 1 prostate cancer support group.


This study demonstrates that there is large variation in the information supplied in TRUS-Bx patient information leaflets in the North Thames region, with some leaflets lacking vital information. It is proposed that a standard patient information leaflet incorporating all the factors in the checklist should be designed, with the incorporation of a new BAUS procedure specific consent form for TRUS-Bx.