A needle biopsy is a way to remove a sample of tissue or cells for testing. Your healthcare provider inserts a needle through your skin into a lump or area of concern to get the sample.
The 2 types of needle biopsy are fine needle aspiration, which removes cells. And core biopsy, which removes a larger amount of tissue. There are specific reasons for using each method. Ask your healthcare provider which you will have.
Needle biopsies are used to find the cause of infection or inflammation and to see if a tumor is cancerous. If cancer is found, your healthcare provider will discuss the need for more tests and treatments.
Your healthcare provider will give you any special instructions necessary to prepare for this procedure. Ask your provider when and how you will learn about the results.
The biopsy may be done at your provider's office, an outpatient clinic, or the hospital.
You will be given a local anesthetic. The anesthetic numbs just the area where the needle will be inserted. It should keep you from feeling pain during the biopsy.
A needle is inserted into the tumor or organ to remove cells or tissue. The needle may have a cutting tip to help remove tissue. The needle is attached to a syringe and the cells or tissue are suctioned into the syringe. The cells or tissue are sent to the lab for testing.
Your provider may use CT (computed tomography) or ultrasound scanning to find the exact location of the tumor. A special X-ray method may be used if the area to be biopsied is in the breast. This may make the test more accurate.
You may have a small bandage placed over the site where the needle punctured your skin.
You may have some swelling or bruising in the area of the biopsy.
Ask your provider what other steps you should take and when you need to come back for a checkup.
The procedure helps in the diagnosis of various medical problems.
You should ask your healthcare provider how these risks apply to you.
Call your provider right away if:
Call during office hours if: