The Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust

What is a Soft Tissue Biopsy

If you have felt a lump or one has been found incidentally on other tests your doctor may request a scan which sometimes may include a biopsy. This is done to obtain a small sample of tissue from the lump so it may be studied under a microscope. Lumps directly under the skin may be biopsied in a clinic however deeper lumps require image guidance and are performed using ultrasound by a Radiologist (x-ray doctor).

How is a soft tissue biopsy performed?

A soft tissue biopsy is performed by a Radiologist.

You may be asked to change into a hospital gown so that the lump can be seen more easily.

All biopsies are performed with local anaesthetic injected into the skin, this will numb the area.

Once a site has been marked and the local anaesthetic administered a few samples are taken from the lump using a special needle.

You will be aware of the procedure however there should be little or no pain.

At the time of biopsy the needle makes a loud clicking sound.

What happens after my procedure?

Once the samples have been obtained a small plaster is applied and you will be asked to wait in the department for 15 minutes before you leave.
It is advised that you avoid driving on the day of procedure so please ensure arrangements are in place.

The local anaesthetic will wear off soon and there may be some discomfort. If required simple painkillers, e.g paracetamol should be taken.

You will have a small plaster on the site of biopsy which is advised to be kept on for the rest of the day. Remove the plaster the following day.

If the site of biopsy enlarges in size, becomes tense and tender or starts oozing a small volume of pus it is advised to call your doctor and arrange a consultation

When will I get the results of my biopsy?

Once the results are available you will be contacted by our Nurse Specialist and a hospital appointment arranged for you.

What you need to know before your procedure:

  • There is no fasting is required.
  • Please ensure your travel arrangements are in place.
  • If you are taking any blood thinning medications, particularly warfarin, this will need to be stopped prior to the biopsy or replaced with other agents depending on the reason. Our Nurse Specialist shall advise on this appropriately at the time of booking.

Where do I go for my biopsy?

Your biopsy will be performed in the Radiology Department at Chapel Allerton Hospital. Chapeltown road, Leeds. LS7 4SA

To check in for a biopsy procedure

Enter through the main entrance of Chapel Allerton Hospital and turn right and follow the corridor signposted for Xray & Ultrasound which is located on the ground floor.

Check in at the main Radiology Reception where you will be directed to the waiting area and a member of staff informed.