Rhode Island Hospital
Providence, RI 02903
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The Miriam Hospital
164 Summit Avenue
Providence, RI 02906
Needle wire localization is performed immediately before to a surgical biopsy when a lump in the breast is too small to be found by hand. It is used to pinpoint the tissue to be biopsied.
Local anesthesia will be given to numb your breast. Your surgeon or radiologist will use guidance from a mammography or breast ultrasound to guide a thin, hollow needle to the area of concern in the breast. Once located, a thin wire will be inserted through the center of the needle and held in place with a small hook. The hollow needle is then removed leaving the wire and hook in place. The wire will be removed when the breast tissue and fluid are taken during the biopsy.
It's common for surgeons to place a tiny, stainless steel clip in the breast at the biopsy site. This way, your care team can easily find the area that was biopsied for future monitoring or if you need a follow up procedure that requires more tissue.