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Spine Image-Guided Biopsy - About the Exam

Mountain Medical performs image-guided biopsy of the spine using CT, MRI, ultrasound, and X-ray equipment. An image-guided biopsy allows Mountain Medical radiologists to determine if lesions on the spine or other abnormalities are spinal cancer.

What you can expect during a image-guided biopsy of the spine (using CT, MRI, ultrasound or X-ray):

  • This procedure is usually done on an outpatient basis.
  • You will be asked to lay face-down on the examination table.
  • A local anesthetic will be injected into the spine to numb it.
  • Depending on whether CT, MRI, ultrasound or x-ray imaging is being used, your radiologist will locate the lesion.
  • A very small nick is made in the skin at the site where the biopsy needle is to be inserted.
  • The radiologist, monitoring the lesion site with the imaging technology, will insert the needle and advance it directly into the mass.
  • Tissue samples are then removed.
  • After this sampling, the needle will be removed.
  • Once the biopsy is complete, pressure will be applied to stop any bleeding and the opening in the skin is covered with a dressing. No sutures are needed.
  • This procedure is usually completed within an hour.

Learn how to prepare for a spine image guided biopsy.

Learn the benefits and risks of spine image guided biopsy.

Watch the X-ray - What to Expect Video.