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TNM Staging System Results

Prostate Cancer TNM T Results

If you have had an MRI scan / biopsy to determine the stage of your prostate cancer you will have been given your TNM Staging System Results.

If conclusive, the TMN Staging System can indicate the tumour’s size, location, and whether it has spread to the lymph nodes or another part of the body (metastasis).

These results will have a combination of the letters T (tumour), N (node) and M (metastasis) and a number to indicate the stage of each, or an X if the result cannot be evaluated.




The number next to the T describes the size and spread of the cancer:

  • T1: The cancer is too small to be felt during a digital rectal examination (DRE) of the prostate but may be visible on the MRI scan.
    • T1a: The tumour is in 5% or less of the prostate tissue removed.
    • T1b: The tumour is in more than 5% of the prostate tissue removed.
    • T1c: The tumour is found during a needle biopsy.
  • T2: The tumour is found only in the prostate, not other parts of the body
    • T2a: The tumour involves one-half of 1 side of the prostate.
    • T2b: The tumour involves more than one-half of 1 side of the prostate, but not both sides.
    • T2c: The tumour has grown into both sides of the prostate.

T1 and T2 tumours are known as localised prostate cancer. The cure rate for localised prostate cancer is very high. Treatment options include Active Surveillance, Radical Prostatectomy, Hormone / Radiotherapy or Focal Therapy, including HIFU Focal Therapy.


  • T3: The tumour has spread outside the prostate and may be growing into tissues or organs close by
    • T3a: The prostate cancer tumour is abutting the edge of the prostate capsule and there is a risk that it may have infiltrated the wall and spread into the surrounding tissue.
    • T3b: The tumour has spread to the seminal vesicles that produce some of the fluid for semen.

T3 prostate cancer is considered to be a relatively advanced stage and radical treatment is necessary.




  • N0: There is no cancer in the lymph nodes near the prostate.
  • N1: There is cancer in 1 or more lymph nodes close by.
  • NX: There is no information about the nearby lymph nodes, or they can’t be assessed. 



  • M0: The cancer has not spread to another part of the body.
  • M1: The cancer has spread to another part of the body.
  • MX: It is unknown if cancer has spread to distant sites.

For a patient to be able to consider HIFU Focal Therapy as a viable treatment option, the cancer tumour must reside only in the prostate gland and not have grown outside the prostate.

For TNM T (tumour) results of 3 or above the cancer tumour is also located outside of the prostate gland and is not suitable to treated with HIFU Focal Therapy.

If you have received your TNM Staging results and would like to discuss what they mean for your diagnosis and treatment options we would be happy to offer advice and information.

Get In Touch

As a group of consultants we are passionate about prostate cancer sufferers knowing about all of their treatment options.

We know that settling on the right treatment is a big decision for you. If you would like to speak to one of our friendly and knowledgeable patient advocates about your diagnosis and the HIFU Focal Therapy treatment option then please do not hesitate to get in touch today.

All enquiries to The Focal Therapy Clinic are confidential, and we are delighted to offer our advice and support with no obligation.