Breast biopsy

A breast biopsy is a procedure to remove a small sample of breast tissue for laboratory testing. Breast biopsy is a way to evaluate a suspicious area in your breast to determine if it is breast cancer. There are several types of breast biopsy procedures.

A breast biopsy provides a sample of tissue that doctors use to identify and diagnose abnormalities in the cells that make up breast lumps or other unusual breast changes. And the lab report from the breast biopsy can help determine whether you need additional surgery or other treatment.

Why it's done Risks How you prepare What you can expect Results

Your doctor may recommend a breast biopsy if:

  • You or your doctor feels a lump or thickening in your breast, and your doctor suspects breast cancer
  • Your mammogram shows a suspicious area in your breast
  • An ultrasound scan reveals a suspicious finding
  • Your breast MRI reveals a suspicious finding
  • You have unusual nipple changes, including crusting, scaling, dimpling skin or bloody discharge

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