What Is A Stereotactic Breast Biopsy?

If you’ve been referred by your physician to receive a stereotactic breast biopsy, you may have some questions. You may be wondering why you’ve been recommended to receive one, how they work, how you can prepare, and what to expect the day of your breast biopsy. In this article, we will answer these questions and more to help you understand and prepare for your stereotactic breast biopsy.

What is a stereotactic breast biopsy?

In short, a stereotactic breast biopsy is a non-surgical method of assessing a breast abnormality, usually when small accumulations of calcium called calcifications are detected during a mammogram. It is an outpatient procedure performed by a specially trained radiologist.

How does a breast biopsy work?

A breast biopsy is typically performed if your doctor becomes concerned following findings during a mammogram or breast ultrasound. There are a few different types of biopsy techniques. During a stereotactic breast biopsy, a special mammography machine uses imaging (usually x-rays) to guide the radiologist to the affected area or abnormal growth. Stereotactic mammography allows radiologists to identify the exact location that they need to retrieve a breast biopsy from. Your radiologist will then send these tissue samples off to a lab to test them for the presence of breast cancer.

How do I prepare for a stereotactic breast biopsy?

Beforehand, be sure to talk with your doctor about any questions or concerns you have. During the test, you could be lying on your stomach for up to an hour, if that concerns you, speak with your radiologist about your options.

What happens during a stereotactic breast biopsy?

You may be asked to wear a gown during the exam and remove some or all clothing. You may also be asked to remove any metal objects or clothing that could interfere with the imaging, such as jewelry, glasses, watches, etc. You will lie with your face down on an exam table as your breast is positioned in an opening in the table, where it will be slightly compressed. 

You will be able to go home after your procedure. Your radiologist or doctor will give you instructions on how to care for the area that was biopsied, including how to clean it and prevent infection at the site. It may take up to one week to receive and analyze the results of your biopsy. If you or a loved one needs a stereotactic breast biopsy in Manhattan, call the board-certified radiologists at Rosetta Radiology. You’re in good hands with us, as we are ACR-accredited for this specific procedure.