Having a Biopsy

When a mammogram or breast ultrasound shows an area that a radiologist believes could be abnormal, a patient may need a biopsy. A surgeon performs the biopsy to obtain a sample or samples of breast tissue that a pathologist will carefully evaluate.

At the Thyra M. Humphreys Center for Breast Health, our state-of-the-art technology allows our board-certified surgeons to perform several types of biopsies without a trip to the operating room.

Digital Stereotactic and Ultrasound-Guided Biopsy

Our digital stereotactic and ultrasound-guided biopsy system allows our doctors to collect accurate samples of suspicious breast tissue right in our Center for Breast Health. These types of biopsies are faster, less invasive and less expensive than biopsies performed through traditional surgical techniques.

All of the Center’s surgeons are certified by the American Society of Breast Surgeons (ASBS) in both stereotactic and ultrasound-guided biopsies.

How Do I Prepare for My Biopsy?

Before your biopsy, your doctor or the Center’s nursing staff will need to review a list of your current medications. If you are taking any blood-thinning medications, such as aspirin, ibuprofen, Coumadin, etc., you will need to stop taking these medications at least five days prior to your procedure.

Am I Able to Eat Before My Biopsy?

You may eat before your biopsy. However, we recommend that you choose a light meal or snack.

What Can I Expect During My Biopsy?

Our board-certified surgeons are able to perform most breast biopsies right here at the Thyra M. Humphreys Center for Breast Health, allowing you to avoid a trip to the operating room. These outpatient procedures take only about an hour.

Stereotactic Breast Biopsy

A stereotactic breast biopsy is a minimally invasive procedure that uses advanced computer imaging technology. This technology uses a three-dimensional coordinate system to map the precise location inside your breast that corresponds to the area of interest shown on your mammogram or ultrasound. During the stereotactic biopsy, your surgeon will remove a small amount of tissue and will send it to the lab for a pathologist to analyze and diagnose.

For more information about what to expect during your stereotactic breast biopsy, please download our helpful fact sheet.

What to Expect During My Stereotactic Breast Biopsy

Ultrasound-Guided Breast Biopsy

An ultrasound-guided breast biopsy uses advanced ultrasound technology to map the precise location inside your breast that corresponds to the area of interest shown on your mammogram or ultrasound. During the ultrasound-guided biopsy, your surgeon will remove a small amount of tissue and will send it to the lab for a pathologist to analyze and diagnose.

What to Expect During My Ultrasound-Guided Breast Biopsy

MRI-Guided Breast Biopsy

When an area of concern inside the breast appears on an MRI exam but not during an ultrasound or mammogram, we perform an MRI-guided breast biopsy. Evangelical’s radiologists perform this outpatient procedure in our Department of Imaging Services’ MRI suite.

For information about MRI-Guided Breast Biopsy, please contact our Imaging Services department at 570-522-2530.

Will I Be Able to Drive Home After My Procedure?

If your doctor provides you with medication to take before to your biopsy, you will need to arrange for someone to take you home after your procedure.

Will I Experience Discomfort After the Biopsy?

You likely will feel minimal to mild discomfort following your procedure. Many patients describe the feeling as being similar to having a bad bruise.

How Soon Will I Be Able to Shower or Take a Bath?

You can shower the day after your biopsy.

How Soon Will I Be Able to Return to Normal Activity?

You can return to normal activity immediately, unless you are in discomfort.

How and When Will I Receive My Results?

Your pathology report should be available 7-10 days after your biopsy. On the day of your procedure, you can choose whether you would like one of our nurses to call you with your results, or if you would rather receive your results during your follow-up appointment with your surgeon. This visit will take place about a week after your biopsy.

If you have any other questions about your biopsy, our nursing staff or clinical navigator will be happy to talk with you. You may also contact your surgeon’s office.

Questions? Want to schedule an appointment?