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What is an open excisional biopsy for breast cancer?

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An open excisional biopsy is surgery to remove an entire lump. The tissue is then studied under a microscope. If a section of normal breast tissue is taken all the way around a lump (called a lumpectomy), the biopsy is also considered a breast cancer treatment. In this technique, a wire is put through a needle into the area to be biopsied. An X-ray helps make sure it’s in the right place, and a small hook at the end of the wire keeps it in position. The surgeon uses this wire as a guide to locate the suspicious tissue. The sample is sent to a pathologist, a doctor who specializes in diagnosing suspicious tissue changes.

SOURCES: The Mayo Clinic. The American Cancer Society.

Reviewed by Laura J. Martin on August 29, 2020

SOURCES: The Mayo Clinic. The American Cancer Society.

Reviewed by Laura J. Martin on August 29, 2020

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What is a sentinel node biopsy for breast cancer?

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