A hollow circular scalpel is used to take a sample of tissue. A punch biopsy is usually used to diagnose skin cancer inflammatory breast cancer or Paget's disease of the breast.
Before the test
If you’re taking blood-thinning medications you may need to stop taking them before the test. Ask your medical team about this. If the sample is being taken from your breast you may have an ultrasound scan to show where to take the sample from.
Will I have pain relief / anaesthetic?
Yes you will have a local anaesthetic to numb the area.
Does it hurt?
You shouldn’t feel any pain as the area will be numbed, but let the doctor know if you are uncomfortable.
How long does it take?
About 20 minutes
After the test
You will have stitches to close up the area, with a dressing on top. If it’s sore when the anaesthetic wears off you can take paracetamol.
You may have a bruise for a week or two.
For more information
1800 200 700