• Needle Biopsy vs. the area cut out and sent away? I seem to favour needle Biopsy , THEN take the breast off if needed,maybe both of them

    Asked by scouser on Wednesday, October 31, 2012

    Needle Biopsy vs. the area cut out and sent away? I seem to favour needle Biopsy , THEN take the breast off if needed,maybe both of them

    8 Answers from the Community

    8 answers
    • nancyjac's Avatar

      Either way the tissue will need to be sent to a pathology lab to determine malignancy. A needle biopsy is quicker and less invasive, but it doesn't provide as much information as a surgical biopsy. Most often if the needle biopsy is positive for cancer cells, you will still need out diagnostic tests and more extensive biopsies to determine the size, scope and spread of the cancer. With a surgical biopsy, much or all of that info becomes available in the pathology report. It your tumor is small (stage 1), it can be removed completely with the biopsy and not additional surgery may be needed.

      over 8 years ago
    • SueRae1's Avatar

      I had a needle biopsy first. The procedure is less evasive and is done under local anesthetic. I was in and out in about 2 hours. A lumpectomy is done under general anesthesia and you will be in the hospital all day. I would go for the needle biopsy and then depending on the results discuss next steps with your Breast Surgeon and Oncologist. If the result is negative, then additional surgery will not be needed.

      over 8 years ago
    • lynn1950's Avatar

      As nancyjac and SueRae say, a needle biopsy is less invasive. I had both a needle biopsy and a core biopsy. My needle biopsy did not pick up the cancer cells among the suspicious looking microcalcifications. Two years, and an ultrasound later, a core biopsy found the cancer deep in near the chest wall. In retrospect, it would have been better for me to have had the ultrasound (and maybe an MRI) two years earlier than I did. If suspicious microcalcifications are your concern, further testing may be warranted. A core biopsy can be done on an outpatient basis under a local anesthetic. Mine was done at the local breast cancer imaging center.

      The worst part is the waiting. Hugs to you and best wishes with your decision.

      over 8 years ago
    • lynn1950's Avatar

      I need to be more clear. Both kinds of biopsies I talked about are needle biopsies. The first was a stereotactic needle biopsy and the second was a core needle biopsy.

      over 8 years ago
    • 2fizz's Avatar

      If it is cancer, personally I'd opt for the bilateral mastectomy. Otherwise I'd always be worried about a recurrence.

      over 8 years ago
    • Peroll's Avatar

      I think you really need to discuss these two options at legnth with your Doctor. You do not state anywhere exactly what and how you have been diagnosed with so far so at best we can guess. I would guess that you have had some lumps found or have had some spots found during a mamogram and have been told that they either may be cancer or are likely cancer but until a biopsy you will not know. The trade off between the needle and cut out options are that the needle is less invasive and quicker but is more likely to return a false negative (miss the cancer if it is there). To make an informed decision you need to discuss the options in detali with your doctor going over the probability that each option will get you the answers you need so that if you do have cancer you can quickly get rid of it and got on with your life. I would recommend that you take someone you trust along with you when you talk to the doctor so tht they can help listen and ask questions. When you talk to the Doctor insist on getting explanations of the procedures and what they will do for you and what the resultrs will mean. Insist that doctor explain all of this in terms that you can understand, it is your right to have this explained to you. From there your path forward should be clear and the decisions easier to make. Good luck you can beat this!!

      over 8 years ago
    • abrub's Avatar

      For diagnostic purposes, I first had an ultra-sound guided needle core biopsy, but then when the findings were unclear (i.e. in the post-biopsy mammo, they found that there was a second, very hard to reach lump) they scheduled me for a full excision of both lumps (tantamount to a lumpectomy.) Finally I got the magic word: Benign.

      Take baby steps, and hope you can be done using the easier procedures.

      over 8 years ago
    • hikerchick's Avatar

      Collect all the facts you can, and opinions you can, and also listen to your intuition. Mine has always been a better bet than outside sources.

      One of the needle biopsies I had missed the area they intended to take a sample from, even though that area was huge, 8 centimeters at its longest (over 3 inches). Doctors are only human. Especially if it's DCIS, the area is more like branches or lace, not a solid mass, so it is easy for the tip of a needle to end up close to the intended area without extracting the sample intended.

      over 8 years ago

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