A breast biopsy is recommended when a suspicious finding is identified on a diagnostic mammogram or breast ultrasound. A needle is used to remove a small amount of tissue from the breast. The tissue sample is sent to a pathologist to be studied under a microscope. Most biopsy results are negative, but a tissue sample is needed to complete the assessment.
A breast biopsy requires a physician’s order for scheduling. Please have your order ready when you call.
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Many major insurance carriers may cover a breast biopsy as a diagnostic procedure. Check with your provider for details specific to your plan.
Unsure if your insurance is accepted?
While we accept most major insurance providers, we recommend verifying your coverage prior to your appointment. You may call your insurance provider, or our insurance and billing specialists can assist with verification. Call 469-398-4099 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Don't have insurance?
All of our centers offer self-pay pricing. Please call 469-398-4099 for more information.
On the day of your exam:
Please arrive 15 minutes prior to your appointment
Do not apply deodorant, lotion or cream, powder, or perfume on your chest, underarm or breast on the day of the procedure
Disclose any allergies or sensitivities to medications, latex, tape, or anesthesia (local and general)
Let your radiologist know if you have any bleeding disorders
Let your radiologist know if you are pregnant or think you may be pregnant
Disclose all medications and supplements, both over-the-counter and prescription, that you consume regularly, including prescription, over-the-counter and herbal medications
Let your radiologist know if you are taking any blood-thinning medicines, aspirin, ibuprofen, or other medicines that affect blood clotting. You may need to stop taking these medicines before the biopsy
If you have any questions prior to your appointment, please call us at (866) 717-2551
A breast biopsy is recommended when a radiologist identifies a suspicious area in the breast tissue. During a biopsy, a small sample of tissue is collected from the breast and examined in a pathology lab to determine if it is cancerous or not.
The radiologist will perform the type of breast biopsy she/he feels is necessary to collect an appropriately-sized sample for the pathologist to analyze based upon the size or suspected type of lesion in the breast. Results are sent to a patient’s physician as soon as they are received from the pathologist.
We perform two types of breast biopsies. Both are extremely reliable, highly-accurate and non-surgical methods for analyzing breast tissue.
After placing an ultrasound probe over the area of concern and using local anesthesia, the radiologist guides a biopsy needle directly into the tissue area of interest for sampling.
A stereotactic breast biopsy uses mammography image-guidance to target the area of concern and help guide the biopsy needle to a specific location.
A breast biopsy is a procedure to remove a small sample of tissue for testing in a laboratory. Breast biopsies are performed to evaluate abnormalities in the cells of breast tissue. Results of a breast biopsy can help your physician determine if surgery or further treatment is needed.
You may be referred for a breast biopsy if:
- A mammogram, breast ultrasound or breast MRI shows an abnormality in your breast
- You or your doctor feels a lump, thickening or nodule in your breast
- You have unusual nipple or areola changes, including crusting, scaling, dimpling skin or a bloody discharge
An ultrasound-guided breast biopsy, also known as an image-guided biopsy, uses sound waves to assist a radiologist in detecting and collecting a sample of a lump or abnormality in breast tissue. An ultrasound-guided biopsy is performed using a needle to extract a small sample of tissue that is examined under a microscope to evaluate whether it is cancerous or not.
During an ultrasound-guided biopsy, the radiologist may also place a small marker the size of a sesame seed to mark the biopsy site. This marker can be used in the future to indicate the location that has been biopsied and/or to assist a breast surgeon when performing a surgical excision.
A stereotactic biopsy is a minimally invasive diagnostic procedure performed to evaluate a calcification or small lesion using mammography-guided imaging to guide the radiologist during the biopsy procedure. During a stereotactic biopsy, the radiologist uses a low dose of x-ray to locate a breast abnormality and using a needle, extracts a sample of tissue to be examined under a microscope by a pathologist.
During a stereotactic biopsy, the radiologist may also place a small marker the size of a sesame seed to mark the biopsy site. This marker can be used in the future to indicate the location that has been biopsied and/or to assist a breast surgeon when performing a surgical excision.
Once a biopsy is complete, the sample of tissue that has been collected is sent to a laboratory to be analyzed under a microscope by a pathologist to determine whether it is cancerous or not. The results of a biopsy are delivered by a patient’s physician or a Solis Mammography radiologist depending on the preference of your physician.
If cancer cells are not found, some follow up may still be required. Solis Mammography will work with you and your physician to create a follow-up plan that is best for you.
What are the chances that a breast biopsy finds cancer?
Roughly 30-35% of all biopsies that Solis Mammography performs result in a cancer diagnosis, although the majority of all breast lumps turn out to be benign (non-cancerous). A breast biopsy is one of the most definitive ways of evaluating whether or not an abnormality is cancerous.
If the biopsy reveals a cancerous mass, Solis Mammography will immediately communicate the results to your referring physician so that you may begin treatment planning.
We provide a local anesthetic to the area that is being biopsied. A breast biopsy should not hurt, although it is common to experience soreness, swelling or bruising after a biopsy.
How to prepare and what to expect during and after a breast biopsy
- Do not apply deodorant, lotion or cream, powder or perfume on your chest, underarm or breast on the day of the procedure
- Disclose all medications and supplements that you consume regularly, including prescription, over-the-counter and herbal medications. Also, let your radiologist know if you are taking any blood-thinning medicines, aspirin, ibuprofen, or other medicines that affect blood clotting. In some cases, it may be necessary to stop taking these medicines before the biopsy. The radiologist and your referring physician will make this determination
- Disclose any allergies or sensitivities to medications, latex, tape, or anesthesia (local and general)
- Let your radiologist know if you have any bleeding disorders
- Let your technologist and radiologist know if you are pregnant or think you may be pregnant
The procedure time for a breast biopsy depends on the type of biopsy being performed. A core needle biopsy or fine needle aspiration can take around 20-30 minutes, however, we ask patients to reserve several hours for the full diagnostic appointment. During your visit the radiologist will perform the biopsy and any additional diagnostic exams, and will consult with you individually to review results.
A breast biopsy is a relatively low-risk procedure and many women return to normal activity the day following their biopsy. It is normal to experience bruising, swelling, bleeding or pain following your procedure. While rare, an incision can become infected.
Note: If you do experience fever, swelling, heat, drainage, excessive bleeding that does not cease, other signs of infection or have any concerns about your procedure, please contact us at (866) 717-2551.
Dress comfortably in a two-piece, loose-fitting outfit. You will change into a gown for your biopsy. We recommend wearing a tight-fitting bra the night following your procedure.
- Keep the bandage on your biopsy site until the day following your procedure
- Do not shower for 24 hours. When you do shower, leave the steri-strips on your biopsy site
- To reduce swelling, you may apply an ice pack on the site several times throughout the first 24-48 hours after your procedure
- You may take acetaminophen for pain, but you should avoid taking nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), which can promote bleeding. Talk with your doctor about taking any prescription medications before or after your procedure