A breast biopsy removes a sample of breast tissue that is looked at under a microscope to check for breast cancer.
For a needle breast biopsy, your doctor uses a needle to take a small sample of fluid or cells from the breast for testing.
A breast biopsy is usually done to check a lump found during a breast examination or a suspicious area found on a mammogram or other imaging.
If there is a good chance that your doctor can get a sample without doing an open (surgical) biopsy, you can have a needle biopsy. You may have a choice of what kind of biopsy you prefer.
Talk to your doctor about all your health conditions before the test. For example, tell your doctor if you:
After either type of biopsy, the needle is removed and pressure is put on the needle site to stop any bleeding. The area is covered with a bandage.
Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse call line if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to keep a list of the medicines you take. Ask your doctor when you can expect to have your test results.
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Current as of: July 26, 2016
Caroline S. Rhoads, MD - Internal Medicine
& Femi Olatunbosun, MB, FRCSC - Obstetrics and Gynecology & Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine & E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine & Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine & Douglas A. Stewart, MD - Medical Oncology & Laura S. Dominici, MD - General Surgery,
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