What are breast biopsies?

A breast biopsy is usually performed after a suspicious breast lesion is seen on either a mammogram or ultrasound images. A breast biopsy will obtain breast cells which are sent to a pathology laboratory for a histological (cell) diagnosis. The biopsy is performed under local anesthetic and a biopsy needle is inserted into the breast and several tissue cells samples are taken. This is then sent to the laboratory for testing. Core biopsies are the most accurate way to evaluate whether a suspicious lump or portion of breast is cancerous. A breast biopsy can help determine if a lump in your breast is cancerous or benign, (non-cancerous) However, it is important to remember that breast lumps are not always cancerous. There are several conditions that can cause lumps or growths in the breast.