A core biopsy is a nonsurgical test to determine whether an abnormal growth in the breast is cancer. There are two types of core biopsies. One is called a stereotactic core biopsy and uses X-ray imaging and the other is called an ultrasound core biopsy and uses sounds waves. During a core biopsy, specialized technicians take X-rays or perform an ultrasound to locate the abnormal tissue in the breast. The radiologist then guides a special needle into the lesion and removes slivers of tissue for analysis. Both of these methods are relatively painless, take 1-2 hours and leave little or no scarring.
Which type of biopsy you elect depends on your specific situation and preferences. Your surgeon will discuss your options, as well as their advantages and disadvantages.