Core Needle & Fine Needle Aspiration

Core Needle Biopsy

This biopsy is performed in the doctor's office to make a diagnosis of a breast problem. When the patient and the doctor feel a lesion, a core biopsy can be used to confirm a diagnosis and/or to rule out a cancer. 

First the skin is cleansed and numbed. Then a small nick is made in the skin and the core needle device is repeatedly placed in the breast, fired, and removed, until adequate samples are obtained. With this biopsy technique the area is not removed, just sampled. No sutures are needed, just steri-strips to approximate the skin.

Fine Needle Aspiration

This procedure is performed to sample cells from a solid lesion or to confirm that a mass is a fluid-filled cyst. A skinny needle is inserted into the breast without anesthesia. This may be done with or with out ultrasound guidance.

If fluid is obtained, it may be discarded or tested based upon its consistency. Further biopsies may be required if the mass is solid.