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What needle biopsies are used in oncology to diagnose cancer?

Oncology often relies on biopsies to diagnose cancer. A biopsy allows your oncologist take a small tissue sample that they can later study in the lab. Oncologists often use needles to withdraw tissue samples for biopsy. Sometimes oncologists perform biopsies via fine needle aspiration, in which a syringe and thin needle are used to withdraw a small amount of tissue from the tumor. A core needle biopsy is similar but uses a bigger needle. This procedure allows the oncologist to take a larger tissue sample than fine needle aspiration makes possible. Needle biopsies are less invasive than excisional and incisional biopsies, during which the surgeon removes either the entire tumor or part of it.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.