Breast Biopsy

A Closer Inspection

When a mammogram finding feels suspicious to your provider, you may get a biopsy so your doctor can make a definite diagnosis.

A biopsy does not mean you have cancer. Only one in five breast biopsies are found to be cancerous.

During your breast biopsy appointment, we collect a small sample of your tissue to determine whether they are cancerous or non-cancerous. Doctors perform biopsies in two ways. The most common is through the use of a local anesthetic and a needle. The area will be cleaned and numbed. Then, with the help of an ultrasound, mammogram or MRI, the radiologist will pinpoint the area in question. The needle collects a tiny sample of your tissue for testing. You can expect a quick recovery from this type of biopsy, and you'll be back to normal activity within 24 hours.

The other type of biopsy is a surgical biopsy. You may require a surgical biopsy depending on the location or type of mass. Surgeons perform these biopsies in the operating room. Patients are given anesthesia, and surgeons remove a portion of the mass for testing. After the biopsy, we test your sample in our lab. You'll receive results within a few days.

You may get a breast hematoma at the site of the biopsy. A hematoma is when blood collects under the skin. It looks like a deep bruise. In the first 48 hours, treat a hematoma with ice. After two days, apply heat to the location using warmed towels, a hot water bottle or a heating pad. Hematomas typically heal within four to six weeks. 

Call (855) 353-3484 to schedule a mammogram and to learn more about breast screening offered by Sanford Health.