Percutaneous liver biopsy is a procedure to take a very small sample
of your liver tissue. Then a doctor looks at this tissue under a microscope.
He or she checks it for infection or other liver problems.
Percutaneous (say "per-kew-TAY-nee-us") means "through
the skin." Sometimes this procedure is called aspiration biopsy or fine-needle
will get medicine to help you relax. You will also get a shot of numbing medicine in the biopsy area. Then the doctor
puts a long needle through your skin between two of your lower ribs on your right side. The needle goes
into your liver to take the tissue sample. The doctor may use X-ray
pictures on a screen to help guide the needle
into the liver. When the needle
goes into the liver, you may feel a pain in your shoulder. This is called referred pain. It's caused by pain
that travels along a nerve near the biopsy area. After the doctor
gets the sample, he or she removes the needle and puts a bandage on the spot where the needle went in. The procedure takes 15 to 20
minutes. But the needle is in your liver for just a few seconds.
After the procedure, you will need to lie on your right side for an
hour or two. This can help stop bleeding in the part of your liver where the biopsy was done.
probably go home the same day. It can take several days to get the results of
the biopsy. Your doctor will discuss the results with you.
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 if you are having
problems. It's also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of
the medicines you take.
Procedures can be stressful. This information will help you understand what you
can expect. And it will help you safely prepare for your procedure.
Go to http://www.healthwise.net/ed
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Current as of:
August 9, 2016
Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
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