Breast Biopsy Procedures

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Frequently Asked Questions

What is a Breast Biopsy?

A breast biopsy involves removing a sample of breast tissue to determine whether it is cancerous or benign (non-cancerous). While physical breast exam, mammography, ultrasound, and other breast imaging methods can help detect a breast abnormality, biopsy followed by pathological (microscopic) analysis of the breast biopsy result is the only definitive way to determine if cancer is present.

Once a sample of breast tissue has been removed by the radiologist, it is sent to the laboratory for microscopic examination by a pathologist. A clinical pathologist is a physician who performs laboratory analyses of tissues to determine their type.

Breast biopsy can be done with a variety of different needles and with either ultrasound or stereotactic imaging to locate the abnormality.  When we perform a biopsy on your breast we determine the best method which will give us the most accurate breast biopsy results and use the smallest needle possible to minimize any breast biopsy pain.

What is a 3D Stereotactic Guided Breast Biopsy?

In keeping with our history of leading the way in our field, CBIS is proud to have the most advanced biopsy system available. We now use the GE Healthcare Senographe Pristina “Serena” 3D stereotactic biopsy system. This system allows us to use tomosynthesis (3D mammography) to precisely locate abnormalities, especially those that were best (or only) seen on 3D mammography.  Biopsies done this way use less radiation and are completed more quickly and accurately than with previous methods.

What is an Ultrasound Guided Breast Biopsy?

Whenever an abnormality is seen by ultrasound, we choose ultrasound guided breast biopsy.  We can use the smallest needles and the patient can lay on the ultrasound bed on her back while we do the procedure.

Can I choose Carolina Breast Imaging Specialists to perform my biopsy even if I got my mammogram somewhere else?

You can always choose where to go for your medical care, regardless of where you had your mammogram or what doctor you use for your primary care.

Many women prefer to get a second opinion before undergoing a breast biopsy.  Most breast biopsies are performed on women who do not have cancer. Our experts have the experience to determine which breast biopsies are necessary and we can often determine that a biopsy is not needed.


We would be glad to review your images and discuss your options with you.

If you choose CBIS for your biopsy or wish for a free second opinion just call us at 252-565-8951 (or schedule an appointment online below) and we will work with you and your doctor to schedule the procedure, usually within a few days.