Desert Valley Radiology Phoenix Arizona
Women's Imaging

Biopsies and Aspirations

Radiology Info

The radiology information resource for patients

Uses of Biopsy & Aspiration

  • Sampling abnormal tissue
  • Draining a fluid-filled cyst

What is Image Guided Breast Biopsy and Aspiration?

A Biopsy is performed to determine if breast tissue is benign or cancerous. An aspiration serves to drain a fluid-filled cyst. Biopsy and aspiration are safe, minimally invasive procedures. During a biopsy small amounts of abnormal or suspicious breast tissue are removed through a needle, and the tissue is studied under a microscope by a pathologist, who will then provide a diagnosis.

There are various methods by which a needle biopsy can be performed. Ultrasound-guided biopsy and aspiration, performed by Desert Valley Radiology, is the technique most often used as an imaging guide when a breast abnormality is visible on ultrasound.

What should you expect?

We realize a biopsy or aspiration may feel very serious to you. However, DVR is focused on patient comfort, in addition to an accurate diagnosis, and we make this our priority. Our specialty trained radiologists and staff make this procedure as comfortable and quick as possible. When you arrive you will be asked to complete paperwork regarding your history and symptoms.

An image-guided biopsy may be performed with local anesthetic and results in minimal discomfort. No stitches are required following these procedures and most women can resume normal daily activity immediately. Keep in mind that more than 80% of all breast abnormalities are benign or non-cancerous.

A relative or friend may join you on the day of the procedure to lend support and drive you home if this makes you more comfortable.

Please do not take aspirin or Ibuprofen in the days prior to a biopsy or aspiration. Prior to your appointment, please discuss all of your medications with your physician and let the staff know if you are taking any blood thinners. It is helpful to wear a two-piece outfit, preferably one that buttons up the front. No change of eating habits is required.

During the procedure, the area of interest will be located with ultrasound imaging. Once identified, the skin will be cleansed and a local anesthetic is injected in the skin and the tissue underneath the skin. Once the area is numb, the radiologist will put a very small nick in the skin for easy placement of the biopsy needle, and then a biopsy guide needle is placed and scanned for location. When the radiologist has confirmed it placement several tissue samples are taken and sent to a pathologist. The pathologist will examine the tissue cells with a microscope and send a report to your doctor.

If you have minor claustrophobia or anxiety, you may want to ask your physician for a prescription for a mild sedative. DO NOT take this medication prior to your arrival or signing paperwork.

Following the procedure

Most biopsies performed in diagnostic imaging departments are very well tolerated with minimal pain or complication. Prior to your leaving our staff will give you follow up instructions for your post procedural care.

When and How will you receive results?

Biopsy samples are sent to a pathologist, who will analyze and provide your physician and Desert Valley Radiology with a diagnosis. Your physician will notify you when results of your biopsy or aspiration are available.

Biopsies & Aspirations are performed at:

Bell Road location

To schedule an appointment, contact us.