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Vacuum assisted core needle biopsy

Utilizing ultrasound guidance or stereotactic biopsy table, a large gauge needle, usually 11-gauge is passed into the area of interest, and multiple coarse samples are obtained through an aperture in the side of the needle. The vacuum pulls the core samples out of the needle onto a specimen tray. A marker is often deployed at the site should subsequent procedure be needed.

Advantages:
1. Much less cost than NLBx. Surgeon, sedation and OR not required.
2. Much quicker procedure, often under 1 hour.
3. Less patient discomfort.
4. Minimal scar, if it all.
5. Minimal amount of tissue removed from breast.
6. Extremely accurate localization (often within 1 mm for calcifications).
7. Multiple cores obtained without removing the needle

Disadvantages:
1. May have sampling error. For example diagnosis of ADH requires excisional biopsy.
2. Cannot perform stereotactic biopsy on thin breast (not enough clearance).