31 Days of “Little Known” FACTS — For Breast Cancer Awareness Month — Day 9 — Too Many Unnecessary Biopsies

Did you know…

1.6 million breast biopsies are performed each year in the US, and approximately 80% are found to be benign.

Why so many biopsies? 

Fear of malpractice influences radiologists to order a biopsy of “anything and everything that shows up on the mammogram.” – The Untold Message of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, by Jeffrey Dach MD

Is there a risk of metastasis?

Puncturing the tumor can result in the release in microscopic quantities of cancer cells into the surrounding lymphatic system of blood vessels. This can allow the cancer cells to move to distant organs and grow. – Hope4Cancer Treatment Centers

Risk of tumor cell seeding through biopsy and aspiration cytology

Is there damage to sensitive breast tissue?

Watch Inside Edition’s investigative report which shows my badly bruised breast from a “guide wire” procedure prior to a surgical biopsy in 2010:

Is Stage Zero Breast Cancer Really Cancer? Women Share Their Doubts

Can a breast biopsy be avoided?

“If it doesn’t look like high-grade DCIS, we should leave it alone. We would eliminate two thirds of all biopsies if we did.” – Dr. Laura Esserman, Take Carcinoma Out of DCIS and Ease Off Treatment.

Marianna Pinto describes how relieved she was to avoid a breast biopsy:

Info about Dr. Kelly and SonoCine Ultrasound

What are other potential issues with breast biopsies?

About Donna Pinto

I am originally from New Jersey and moved to Los Angeles with my family at age 12. After graduating from San Diego State University with a BA in Journalism, I had a short-stint in magazine advertising sales before landing my "dream job" with Club Med. For two years I worked at resorts in Mexico, The Bahamas, The Dominican Republic and Colorado. My husband Glenn & I met in Ixtapa, Mexico and we embarked on a two year honeymoon around the world. This was also a research project for a book we wrote called "When The Travel Bug Bites: Creative Ways to Earn, Save and Stay Abroad." I am also the author of a quote book for new graduates -- "Cheatnotes on Life: Lessons From The Classroom of Life." In 1997, we settled in San Diego and I was blessed to work part-time from home for non-profit organizations while raising our two boys. In 2010, a DCIS diagnosis changed my life. DCIS 411 is the culmination of my on-going journey and discoveries.
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