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MRI-Guided Biopsies or Biopsy

Scheduling and Directions

MRI Scan in Atlanta

Having a magnetic resonance imaging scan, or MRI scan, in Atlanta at DeKalb Medical is an effective way for your doctor to get information that helps him or her make a more accurate diagnosis of your condition. Unlike X-rays and computed tomographic or CT scans, which use radiation, an MRI scan uses powerful magnets and radio waves.

Because a very strong magnet is used in an MRI scan, if you have a pacemaker and other implanted device you may not be able to have this particular exam.

An MRI scan produces dozens and sometimes hundreds of images that can be viewed from many different angles. Single MRI images are called slices. They can be stored on a computer or printed out using film. A radiologist who is specially trained in reviewing your images will promptly provide a report to your physician about the findings of your MRI scan in Atlanta at DeKalb Medical. Your physician will share the results with you.

Magnetic Resonance Imaging in Georgia

DeKalb Medical is among those hospitals that offer both traditional and open magnetic resonance imaging in Georgia. The wide-open MRI scanner in Atlanta at DeKalb Medical often is better for those people who are claustrophobic or have a fear of being closed in because the machine is not as close to your body as it is in a traditional MRI. Some patients benefit from taking a mild sedative prior to their MRI scan to help them relax for the test. Talk with your physician if you have any anxiety about your MRI scan in Atlanta.

Preparing for your MRI Scan

Your MRI-guided breast biopsy at DeKalb Medical will be done as an outpatient procedure. Unless you are told otherwise, you may follow your regular daily routine and take medications as usual.

The procedure does require an injection of contrast into your bloodstream. The radiologist or technologist may ask if you have allergies of any kind, such as allergy to iodine or x-ray contrast material, drugs, food, the environment or asthma. However, the contrast material used for an MRI exam, called gadolinium, does not contain iodine and is less likely to cause side effects or an allergic reaction. The radiologist also should know if you have any serious health problems or if you have recently had surgery. Some conditions, such as severe kidney disease, may prevent you from being given contrast material for an MRI.

You will be asked to wear a gown during the exam. You will be awake during your biopsy and should have little or no discomfort. Most women report little or no pain and no scarring on the breast. Some women find that the major discomfort of the procedure is from lying on their stomach for the length of the procedure, which can be reduced by strategically placed cushions.

You must remain still while the biopsy is performed.

When you receive the local anesthetic to numb the skin, you will feel a slight pin prick from the needle. The area will become numb within a short time. You may feel some pressure when the biopsy needle is inserted. As tissue samples are taken, you will hear clicks from the sampling instrument.

After your MRI-Guided Biopsy

If you experience swelling and bruising following your biopsy, you may be instructed to take an over-the-counter, non-aspirin pain reliever and to use a cold pack. Cold packs are provided in the Breast Center. All breast biopsy pts are taken to the Breast Center for a low-compression mammogram to verify the placement of the marker. It is also to note the changes in the breast. Although temporary bruising is normal, you should contact your physician if you experience excessive swelling, bleeding, drainage, redness or heat in the breast. You should avoid strenuous activity for 24 hours after returning home, but then usually you can resume normal activities.

The samples are examined in the laboratory by a pathologist to determine if cancer cells are present. A detailed report from the lab will be sent to your physician, who will share the results with you.

Scheduling and Directions

DeKalb Medical offers magnetic resonance imaging in Georgia at DeKalb Medical at North Decatur and DeKalb Medical at Hillandale.

Your physician will contact DeKalb Medical to schedule all MRI-guided biopsy tests for you.

All of your MRI-guided breast biopsies will be performed at DeKalb Medical at North Decatur, go to the hospital’s central registration area.

  • From North Decatur Road, enter the hospital campus via Wash Lively Road.
  • At road end, turn right. (Note: If you are in a wheelchair or need to be dropped off at the entrance, turn left and proceed to the Central
  • Registration patient drop-off which is on the right just past the main hospital entrance. Your driver should then turn around and continue to the Visitor/Patient parking deck.)
  • At stop sign, turn left and park in the Visitor/Patient parking deck.
  • Take any elevator or stairs to the 3rd level.
  • Proceed to the Pedestrian Bridge to the hospital.
  • Take bridge straight ahead to the escalators.
  • Take escalators down one level.
  • Once off escalators, turn right and immediately left and follow the directions to the hospital main lobby.
  • Proceed past the hospital Gift Shop on your right.
  • Once in the main lobby, follow the hallway to Central Registration.
  • At the end of hallway, turn left.
  • Central Registration is on the right.

If your procedure is being performed at DeKalb Medical at Hillandale, go to the hospital’s registration area.

  • Park in the hospital parking lot.
  • Proceed to the main entrance of the hospital.
  • Registration is directly on the right – you must register before proceeding to the Imaging Department.
  • When you have completed registration, a staff member will direct you to the Imaging Department for your procedure.

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