Intervention (Breast Biopsy)

An Intervention, or Breast Biopsy, is a procedure to examine a specific area of the breast for abnormalities. A very fine needle is guided into a breast nodule to take a small tissue sample, which is then sent to a laboratory for analysis.

HOW DO I PREPARE FOR MY EXAM?

  • Please arrive 15 minutes prior to your appointment.
  • Take all prescribed medications as directed.
  • Wear a two-piece outfit so you can change for the exam more comfortably.

WHAT HAPPENS DURING MY EXAM?

  • You will be asked to remove your clothing from the waist up and given a robe.
  • Your breast area will need to be visible to your technologist for the exam.
  • A technologist will go over the consent form, explain the procedure and answer any questions.
  • We will escort you to the exam room where you will be greeted by the radiologist and positioned for your exam. We will perform a pre-scan to document the area of interest.
  • The radiologist will administer a generous amount of local freezing and guide a thin tube into the correct location under ultrasound guidance.
  • The radiologist will confirm the correct location by viewing the needle from multiple angles.
  • Testing of the probe location is sometimes performed by the radiologist, if needed.
  • The radiologist will let you know when the procedure has begun. Band-Aids will be placed over treatment areas.
  • You will then be checked by the technologist and if there are no concerns, you are free to leave with your driver.
  • SPECIAL NOTE: The procedure may vary depending on the biopsy method:
    • Fine Needle Aspiration Biopsy (FNA) - A type of ultrasound-guided biopsy in which a very thin needle and syringe are used to remove (aspirate) a small amount of fluid or cells from a lump.
    • Ultrasound-Guided Core Biopsy - A special hollow needle is used to take a small cylinder-shaped (core) sample of tissue from a lump or abnormality.
    • Wire Localization - A fine wire marks the exact location of an abnormality, usually before a surgeon removes a lump. Once the abnormality is localized within the breast tissue, a local freezing is used to numb the area. A hollow needle is inserted, either by mammographic or ultrasound guidance, and a thin wire with a hook on the end is fed through the needle. Once the wire is correctly place, the needle is removed. The patient would then be ready for surgery.

WHEN WILL I GET MY RESULTS?

We will forward the results to your doctor within one week.

HOW MUCH WILL IT COST?  

This exam is covered under your Alberta Health Care Plan. It is not currently offered at our Saskatchewan clinic.

For Your Appointment

Please ensure that you bring your requisition with to your appointment.

Questions?

Duration

30-60 minutes

Location