Newer, Gentler Breast Biopsy Available at AMMC
Arkansas Methodist Medical Center’s Dr. Walter Waechter is offering women faced with a suspicious mammogram or small breast lump a less invasive breast biopsy that keeps women out of the operating room and avoids the stitches and scarring associated with a traditional open surgical biopsy.
The procedure is done with the Mammotome Breast Biopsy System, a minimally invasive breast biopsy device that allows doctors to biopsy suspicious tissue through a tiny incision in less than an hour with an immediate recovery. The biopsy can be done in Dr. Waechter’s office. Studies show biopsies performed with the Mammotome are as diagnostically reliable as open surgical biopsies in determining if a woman has breast cancer.
"Whenever possible, a minimally invasive breast biopsy should be performed rather than an open surgical biopsy," said Dr. Waechter. "Now women can get an accurate diagnosis with an office or outpatient procedure that is less invasive, less traumatic and easier on a woman’s body. It’s also a way to avoid the operating room altogether if it’s not breast cancer, which is the case for about 80 percent of women."
In the procedure, a women lies on a table while the doctor places the Mammotome probe through a small incision about the size of a match head. Using ultrasound or x-ray imaging the doctor can accurately pinpoint the suspicious tissue and gently vacuum, cut and remove this tissue for further examination. Only a small adhesive bandage is required to cover the incision. The procedure typically takes less than an hour and women can return to normal activity immediately following the biopsy.