Lumps or abnormalities in the breast are often detected by physical examination, mammography, or other imaging studies. However, it is not always possible to tell from these imaging tests whether an abnormality is benign or cancerous. Image-guided biopsy is performed by taking samples of an abnormality under some form of guidance such as ultrasound, MRI or mammography.
The radiologist will determine the best form of guidance to the site of the abnormal growth. Some common incidences are:
- a suspicious solid mass
- microcalcifications (a tiny cluster of small calcium deposits)
- a distortion in the structure of the breast tissue
- an area of abnormal tissue change
- a new mass or area of calcium deposits present at a previous surgery site
What to expect
If you have been referred to have a breast biopsy, you will not be alone. One of our Breast Health Nurse Navigators will be with you all the way, to guide you through every step with gentle care and assurances. All of your questions will be addressed, and she will provide you and your family with resources and support along the way. Your nurse navigator will also work closely as a liaison with your primary care provider and surgeon.
Explanations of two types of breast biopsies:
Click here for instructions how to prepare for a stereotactic breast biopsy.
Click here for instructions how to prepare for an ultrasound guided breast biopsy.