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Breast Biopsy

A breast biopsy is a medical procedure performed to evaluate suspicious breast abnormalities or changes detected during breast imaging or physical examination. It involves the removal of a small sample of breast tissue for laboratory analysis. Breast biopsy plays a crucial role in diagnosing breast conditions, including breast cancer, and helps guide appropriate treatment decisions. In this article, we will explore the concept of breast biopsy, its significance in breast health, and the procedure involved in this essential diagnostic tool.

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About Breast Biopsy

A breast biopsy is performed when imaging tests, such as mammograms or ultrasounds, detect an abnormality or when a palpable lump or change is found during a physical examination. The purpose of the biopsy is to obtain tissue samples from the suspicious area to determine whether it is cancerous (malignant) or non-cancerous (benign).

Procedure of Breast Biopsy

  1. Imaging Guidance: Breast biopsies can be performed using various imaging techniques to precisely target the suspicious area. These may include mammography-guided biopsy, ultrasound-guided biopsy, or MRI-guided biopsy. The choice of technique depends on the nature and location of the abnormality.

  2. Local Anaesthesia: Before the biopsy, local anaesthesia is administered to numb the breast tissue and minimise discomfort during the procedure.

  3. Tissue Sample Collection: The healthcare provider uses a specialised needle or surgical instrument to remove a small sample of tissue from the suspicious area. The method used may be fine-needle aspiration biopsy, core needle biopsy, vacuum-assisted biopsy, or surgical biopsy, depending on the specific circumstances.

  4. Pathology Analysis: The tissue sample is sent to a pathology laboratory for analysis by a pathologist. The pathologist examines the sample under a microscope and performs additional tests, such as immunohistochemistry or genetic testing, to determine the presence of cancer or other breast conditions.

  5. Post-Biopsy Care: After the biopsy, the patient may experience mild bruising or soreness, which can be relieved with over-the-counter pain medication. The healthcare provider will provide specific instructions for post-biopsy care and discuss the timeline for receiving the biopsy results.

 

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