Breast Biopsy

Breast Biopsy : Risks & Types

The breast biopsy is a procedure where a sample of the breast is taken from the body and taken to the labs to be tested. This form of tests is mainly taken for a suspicious area in order to determine as to where the individual has developed breast cancer. Through biopsy, the doctors are able to identify and diagnose the abnormalities of breast cells that entail: 

  • Breast lumps

  • Unusual changes in the breast.

This process is also done if there are any concerns with ultrasounds or the mammogram. 

What is the reason to do a breast biopsy?

The reasons to do breast biopsy are as follows: 

  • If the doctor finds that there are some sorts of thickening or some sort of lumps in the breast, they might tell you to get a breast biopsy. 

  • If the mammogram shows that there is some sort of suspicious area in the breast. 

  • If the ultrasound s causing some signs of suspicion. 

  • If the MRI image has shown some sort of issues with the matter. 

  • If the doctor notices any sort of nippular or areolar changes that include crusting, scaling, sampling or bloody discharge. 

What are the risks involved with Breast biopsy?

The risks involved with breast biopsy are the following: 

  • There can be a bit of bleeding or bruising during the process

  • There can be some sort of infection if the biopsy isn’t taken right.

  • Depending upon the amount of tissue removed from the breast, there can be some differences in how the breast appears. 

  • There are also risks from the other surgeries that depend upon the result of the biopsies.

How to prepare for the procedure?

Preparing for this procedure entails the following:

  • Informing our doctors about your allergies

  • Informing your doctor if you have taken aspirin

  • Informing the doctor if you are taking any sort of blood thinning medication. 

  • Informing your doctor if you are not able to lie on your stomach for extended periods of time.  

  • Informing the doctor if you have any sort of cardiac pacemaker while MRI biopsy is being done.

  • Wearing a bra while the procedure is going on. It is because, during the procedure, a cold pack might be placed. In order to reinforce this placement, a bra can be used. 

Types of Breast biopsy

The types of breast biopsy are as follows: 

  • Fine needle aspiration biopsy: the simplest form of biopsy, this process entails you laying on a medical bed and steadying the lump while the doctor takes out the sample.

  • Core Needle Biopsy: The doctor uses a thin hollow needle to remove the breast mass. Often, ultrasound is used for guidance in this matter. 

  • Stereotactic Biopsy: It uses the mammograms in order to ascertain the position of the lump so as to take a biopsy from it. 

  • Ultrasound-guided core needle biopsy: This core needle biopsy makes the sure of ultrasound for guidance. 

  • MRI guided Core needle biopsy: this core needle biopsy makes the use of MRI as guidance to find and take the sample from the lump

  • Surgical biopsy: In this process, a portion of the breast is removed in order to examine it later on. As for removing this, many methods can be used like incision or excision biopsy. 


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Dr. Madhu Goel

Senior Gynecologist and a Senior Consultant

Dr. Madhu Goel is a well renowned senior gynaecologist and a senior consultant at Fortis La femme, New Delhi. She runs a private consultation in Goel’s surgery and Gynea centre and prior to being associated with Fortis; she was a consultant a Rockland Hospital.