Core Biopsy

What is a biopsy?

When other tests show that you might have breast cancer, you will probably need to have a biopsy. Needing a breast biopsy doesn’t necessarily mean you have cancer. Most biopsy results are not cancer, but a biopsy is the only way to find out. During a biopsy, a surgeon will remove cells from the suspicious area so they can be studied in the lab to see if cancer cells are present.

The doctor will  take a tissue sample and send it to a lab where a specialist, called a pathologist, will look at it. It typically will take a few days for you to find out the results.

Core needle biopsy

A core biopsy uses a larger needle to sample breast changes felt by the doctor or pinpointed by ultrasound or mammogram.  Another way to do a core biopsy is known as vacuum-assisted.

Fine needle aspiration biopsy

In a fine needle aspiration (FNA) biopsy, a very thin, hollow needle attached to a syringe is used to withdraw (aspirate) a small amount of tissue from a suspicious area. The needle used for an FNA biopsy is thinner than the one used for blood tests.

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