Breast Biopsy

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Breast Biopsy Preparation Steps by Hill Medical

What do you need to prepare for your Stereotactic or Ultrasound-Guided Breast Biopsy?

For the stereotactic or ultrasound-guided breast biopsy procedure, you will be asked to remove some or all of your clothes and to wear a gown during the exam. A comfortable two-piece outfit is preferred. You may also be asked to remove jewelry, eye glasses and any metal objects or clothing that might interfere with the x-ray images.

Women should always inform their physician if there is any possibility that they are pregnant. Some procedures using image-guidance are typically not performed during pregnancy because radiation can be harmful to the fetus.

You should not wear deodorant, powder, lotion or perfume under your arms or on your breasts on the day of the exam.

Prior to a needle biopsy, you should report to your doctor all medications that you are taking, including herbal supplements, and if you have any allergies, especially to anesthesia. Your physician will advise you to stop taking aspirin or a blood thinner two days before your procedure.

Also, inform your doctor about recent illnesses or other medical conditions.

You may want to have a relative or friend accompany you and drive you home afterward. This is recommended if you have been sedated.

What do you need to prepare for your MRI-Guided Breast Biopsy?

Please do not bring hearing aids, credit cards, jewelry and watches, eyeglasses, pens, removable dental work, and anything that's magnetic near the MRI machine.

The technologist will review the procedure with you, answer any questions, and have you sign a consent form.

You'll be asked to fill out a screening form before having your MRI-Guided Breast Biopsy. The form may ask whether you have had previous surgeries, have any metal objects in your body, or have any medical devices (like a cardiac pacemaker) surgically implanted in your body.

Most, but not all, implanted medical devices are allowed near the MRI machine. Talk to your doctor or the technologist operating the machine if you have concerns about any implanted devices or conditions that may interfere with the MRI.

MRI can seriously affect some types of implanted medical devices.

  • Implanted cardiac pacemakers and defibrillators can malfunction.
  • Cochlear (inner-ear) implants can be damaged. Cochlear implants are small electronic devices that help people who are deaf or who can’t hear well understand speech and the sounds around them.
  • Brain aneurysm clips can move due to MRI's strong magnetic field. This can cause severe injury.

Your doctor will let you know if you shouldn't have the MRI-Guided Breast Biopsy because of a medical device. If this happens, consider wearing a medical ID bracelet or necklace or carrying a medical alert card that states that you shouldn't have an MRI.

Some MRI examinations may require the patient to receive an injection of contrast material into the bloodstream. The radiologist or technologist may ask if you have allergies of any kind, such as allergy to iodine or x-ray contrast material, drugs, food, the environment, or asthma. However, the contrast material most commonly used for an MRI exam, called gadolinium, does not contain iodine and is less likely to cause side effects or an allergic reaction.

The radiologist should also know if you have any serious health problems or if you have recently had surgery. Some conditions, such as severe kidney disease may prevent you from being given contrast material for an MRI. If there is a history of kidney disease, it may be necessary to perform a blood test to determine whether the kidneys are functioning adequately.

Women should always inform their physician or technologist if there is any possibility that they are pregnant. MRI has been used for scanning patients since the 1980s with no reports of any ill effects on pregnant women or their babies. However, because the baby will be in a strong magnetic field, pregnant women should not have this exam unless the potential benefit from the MRI exam is assumed to outweigh the potential risks. Pregnant women should not receive injections of contrast material

Prior to a needle biopsy, you should report to your doctor all medications that you are taking, including herbal supplements, and if you have any allergies, especially to anesthesia. Your physician will advise you to stop taking aspirin or a blood thinner two days before your procedure.

Also, inform your doctor about recent illnesses or other medical conditions.

Tell your doctor if being in a fairly tight or confined space causes you anxiety or fear. This fear is called claustrophobia. If you have this condition, your doctor might give you medicine to help you relax. Your doctor may ask you to fast (not eat) for 6 hours before you take this medicine on the day of the test.

You may want to have a relative or friend accompany you and drive you home afterward. This is recommended if you have been sedated.


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