Breast Biopsy Techniques

  • Alicia Growney
  • Lisa A. Newman


Breast biopsy techniques have evolved significantly over the past century. Often, breast specialists will rely upon the breast surgeon to provide advice regarding which biopsy approach is preferred for a given clinical or imaging abnormality. The now-antiquated single-stage biopsy with frozen section analysis followed by immediate mastectomy procedure has been largely replaced by a two-stage approach, which emphasizes on accurate diagnosis as the first step and definitive surgery as a later step. The addition of breast-conserving approaches to the armamentarium of treatment options for breast cancer motivated aggressive expansion of alternative biopsy techniques. Open surgical biopsies (either excisional or incisional) are still considered gold standard methods for definitively establishing a cancer diagnosis; however, current standards stress the use of percutaneous needle biopsy, wherever possible, as the initial diagnostic tool. This diagnostic strategy is crucial for evaluation of abnormalities seen on screening mammography – many of which prove to be benign.


Needle Biopsy National Comprehensive Cancer Network Core Needle Biopsy National Comprehensive Cancer Network Percutaneous Needle Biopsy 
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Copyright information

© Springer New York 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of SurgeryUniversity of Michigan Health SystemsAnn ArborUSA
  2. 2.University of Michigan Breast CenterUniversity of MichiganAnn ArborUSA

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