Use of core biopsy enables our physicians to diagnose findings detected on mammography, ultrasound or MRI. This procedure is designed to save women from undergoing unnecessary surgery. It is relatively painless and minimally invasive,making it a faster and less traumatic alternative to traditional surgical biopsy.
EWBC is proud to be the first to introduce to our community stereotactic breast biopsy(1993), MRI breast biopsy (2003) and developed ultrasound breast biopsy technology over the last 25 years.
Please inform your doctor of any prescription or over-the-counter medications you are currently taking. These include aspirin, ibuprofen and blood thinners such as Coumadin or Plavix. Some of these medications may need to be temporarily stopped several days prior to your biopsy. Also, provide your physician with a list of any known allergies and include if you are allergic to local anesthetics, epinephrine, tape, latex or betadine.
- After our technologist has positioned you and has performed the necessary breast imaging, the physician will locate the area to be biopsied.
- Your skin will then be cleansed with an antiseptic and the biopsy area will be numbed.
- A very small skin incision will be made to help the biopsy device enter the breast with ease. You may feel some pressure as the device is positioned, but most women report feeling little or no pain.
- Multiple tissue samples will be taken for microscopic examination to study the makeup of cells. You may hear a hum, beep, click or a vacuum sound as the samples are collected.
- The physician will insert a tiny titanium marker or clip at the biopsy site so that its exact location can be easily identified in the future. This marker poses no health or safety risk and you will not feel or notice it after placement.
MRI guided breast biopsy: An IV will be inserted into your arm so that a contrast agent can be used to see small details in the breast tissue.
Stereotactic breast biopsy: You will be lying face down on a special biopsy table. Your breast will be placed in an opening on the table.
Ultrasound guided breast biopsy: You will be lying on your back. A gel is typically applied for ultrasound imaging.
- Pressure will be applied to the biopsy site to help prevent bruising. This usually takes only a few minutes.
- A steri-strip or adhesive gel will be placed over the incision and you will be provided with a cold pack to apply to the biopsy site. In some instances, a compression wrap bandage may be placed around the chest to minimize chances of swelling or bruising.
- A gentle mammogram of the biopsied breast will be performed to confirm placement of the marker site.
Most women resume normal daily activities within 24 hours following their procedure. Your doctor will contact you after receiving your biopsy results and will also provide any necessary instructions for follow-up care.
More than 80% of all breast lesions identified for core biopsy are diagnosed as benign or non-cancerous and present no health risk to the patient.
This page is intended as an educational resource only. It is not a substitute for professional care.
Please see your physician if you have any concerns about your own health.