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Biopsy for brain cancer

What is a biopsy?

During a biopsy, a doctor removes a sample of tissue or fluid from the body. A pathologist inspects the cells under a microscope to see if they are cancerous. If the cells are found to be cancerous, a biopsy can help determine whether the cancer began at the site of the biopsy, or if it started somewhere else in the body and spread to the biopsy site.

Some biopsies are performed under image guidance, such as ultrasound, computed tomography (CT) or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). This allows your doctor to collect cells from deeper inside the body. Depending on the type of biopsy performed, you will receive an anesthetic to minimize any pain.

Biopsy medical animation

Video: Biopsy Medical Animation

Medical animation

Biopsy / surgical resection for brain cancer

Whenever possible, a full surgical resection of the cancerous tissue is performed. If such a resection threatens neurological function, then a lesser resection, or simple biopsy, is performed.

A biopsy for brain cancer involves the removal of a small amount of the cancerous tissue from the brain. This helps us evaluate the tumor to plan your brain cancer treatment. A needle biopsy may be performed for tumors in difficult-to-reach or critical areas of the brain.

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