How are biopsies used to diagnose urinary system cancers?

A biopsy will help your doctor diagnose urinary system cancer by providing an expert analysis of a tissue sample taken from a suspected cancer site, such as a tumor. Biopsies are used to diagnose bladder, ureter, and urethral cancer more often than kidney cancer. For example, a tissue sample for a biopsy may be collected during a physical exam using a ureteroscope or cystoscope. Tissue samples may also be collected during surgery to remove a tumor or by using a specially designed needle. If a biopsy is needed to diagnose kidney cancer, it is likely that the tissue sample will be collected with a needle. The tissue sample is then sent to a lab to be examined by a specialist. This analysis will help your doctor categorize the cancer using a staging process.

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