Dr. Jay R. Anam

Dr. Jay R. Anam

Breast Cancer Surgeon
DNB General Surgery, M.Ch

Understanding Breast Cancer Biopsy

You or your family member might have been advised to do a biopsy.

It’s easy to be scared or a little overwhelmed by this situation.

but it is important to know about this procedure, Right?

In this blog post, we will explore the process of breast cancer biopsy, what to expect during the procedure, and why it is so crucial in the fight against breast cancer.

Dr. Jay R. Anam

Dr. Jay R. Anam

Breast Cancer Surgeon

Breast Cancer Biopsy

For many women, a biopsy is the first step in diagnosing breast cancer.

It involves the removal of a small tissue sample from the breast for analysis.

Although the idea of a biopsy can be scary and overwhelming, it is an essential step in identifying and treating breast cancer.

Types of Biopsy

Biopsy procedures can be classified into three categories.

Let’s understand them one by one,

  • FNAC (Fine Needle Aspiration Cytology):

During this procedure, we take a small 10 ml syringe and a very fine needle and insert it into the tumour in the breast.

Once inserted, we aspirate the syringe and collect the samples there.

The syringe is so fine and small that we collect just a few cells from the lesions.

That’s the reason why we do not recommend this method for diagnosing Cancer.

There are very few cell samples available, and it becomes difficult to conclude whether the tumour is cancerous or not.

Moreover, we cannot determine whether it’s invasive or non-invasive Cancer.

  • Excisional Biopsy :

During this biopsy procedure, doctors put a cut on the breast and remove the whole tumour and send it for diagnosis.

But science has advanced significantly. So, doing an excisional biopsy just for the diagnosis is not the right approach.

Excisional Biopsy is used in very rare instances. We have to do Excisional Biopsy in very few cases where there is a discrepancy in our core biopsy.

For e.g.,
If we conclude on mammography that the patient has Cancer, the core biopsy’s results are the opposite. In such cases, Excisional Biopsy might be recommended.

The reason to avoid Excisional Biopsy is that it is done for diagnostic purposes only. So if the results come positive, the patient has to go under the surgery once again.

Another reason is that definitive surgery for Cancer gets compromised due to Excisional Biopsy.

  • Core Needle Biopsy :

This procedure is regarded as a gold standard in terms of diagnosis of Cancer.

In this procedure, we use a gun needle equipped with the spring action. We make a small incision in the skin above the tumour, insert the gun needle inside, and bring a core sample out.

We collect 3 to 4 samples from different parts of the tumour and send them to Histopath.

It’s one of the most accurate and precise methods to diagnose Breast Cancer. In fact, it can deliver up to 90% of accurate results.

That’s why we strongly recommend core biopsy in our patients.

Ultrasound-guided Core Biopsy :

In some cases, the tumour is either not visible or accessible from the surface.

In such cases, we use this advanced method that uses Ultrasound for diagnosing breast cancer.

These are the most common methods used to diagnose Breast Cancer.

In some cases, when we find a tumour in the MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) that is very small, we perform guide-wire excisional Biopsy or sono-guided wide excision too. But primarily, the above methods are used.

Wrapping up

After reviewing a brief information on the types of Biopsy for diagnosing breast cancer, we hope all your doubts are clear.

Still, if you need additional information or need assistance, feel free to contact our team. We are here for you, always.