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A needle biopsy of the lung is a procedure to take a sample (biopsy) of lung tissue. The doctor puts a long needle through your chest wall to get the sample. Another doctor will look at the lung tissue with a microscope to check for infection, cancer, or other lung problems.
You may be sore where the doctor made the cut (incision) in your skin and put in the biopsy needle. You may feel some pain in your lung when you take a deep breath. These symptoms usually get better in a few days. If you cough up mucus, there may be streaks of blood in the mucus for the first week after the procedure.
You may need to take it easy at home for a day or two after the procedure. For 1 week, try to avoid heavy lifting and strenuous activities. These activities could cause bleeding from the biopsy site.
It can take several days to get the results of the biopsy. The doctor or nurse will discuss the results with you.
This care sheet gives you a general idea about how long it will take for you to recover. But each person recovers at a different pace. Follow the steps below to feel better as quickly as possible.
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 advice line (811 in most provinces and territories) 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.
Call 911 anytime you think you may need emergency care. For example, call if:
Call your doctor or Health Link at 811 now or seek immediate medical care if:
Watch closely for changes in your health, and be sure to contact your doctor or Health Link at 811 if you have any problems.
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Adaptation Date: 2/24/2022
Adapted By: Alberta Health Services
Adaptation Reviewed By: Alberta Health Services
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