Breast Biopsy

A breast biopsy is used when an abnormality which has been detected by ultrasound, mammography or clinical exam is found and tissue acquisition is necessary.

The Breast Center of Greensboro Imaging offers different types of breast biopsies including ultrasound-guided breast biopsy and 3-D stereotactic guided biopsy. All procedures are performed in a convenient, comfortable outpatient setting. These procedures are minimally invasive. You can return to normal activities the following day.

We also offer MRI guided biopsies at our 315 West Wendover location.

How to prepare for your breast biopsy

Eat a light meal before your biopsy. Wear a comfortable two-piece outfit so you may keep your pants on during the procedure. You will be asked to wear a gown. Most women can return to normal activities the same day with minimal limitations. You will not need a driver because we use only a local anesthetic which will numb the area where the biopsy is being done.

What Happens During the biopsy?

Our technologist will take a brief medical history, a radiologist will explain the procedure and have you sign a consent form. You will be asked to change into a gown and lie down on a table or sit in a chair depending on the type of biopsy. The doctor will apply a local anesthetic to your breast. A biopsy needle is inserted into the breast abnormality by the radiologist using image-guided technology. Samples are obtained and a small biopsy marking clip is placed in the area biopsied which will identify the site for future reference. The marker will cause no pain, disfigurement or harm. Following the procedure, your skin is covered with steri-strips and band-aid to protect the biopsy site and promote healing. A follow-up mammogram is then obtained to confirm proper placement of the biopsy clip.

Plan for approximately a 1-2 hour appointment which includes a radiologist consultation and additional mammogram images following the procedure. The actual procedure will take 30 to 40 minutes to complete.

After the Breast Biopsy

You will be sent home with 2 ice packs, band-aids, gauze and post-procedure instructions. The site will be tender for a few days and bruising may be present. Most women experience a moderate ache which is usually controlled by an ice compress and acetaminophen (Tylenol). The biopsy site can remain tender for 1-2 weeks. Wear a bra with good support, even a sports bra if you have one. Do not engage in any strenuous activity and get plenty of rest. You may shower the morning after the biopsy, being careful not to soak or scrub the biopsy site. A small lump at the biopsy site may be present, which should disappear in about a month.

When Can I Expect Results?

Samples are sent to Moses Cone pathology lab for analysis. You will be contacted by our nurses the day after your biopsy. Most biopsy results are ready the next day. Your doctor will also receive a report.