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Too many women are given surgical biopsies to check for breast cancer

Category: Breast

When women receive an abnormal breast cancer test result, they are often referred to have the potential growth biopsied. However, medical experts are increasingly saying that too many women are being given surgical biopsies when far less invasive options exist.

For example, a team of researchers from the University of Florida recently found that many women who have suspicious breast cancer tests are given open biopsies, even though needle-based tests are now considered preferable.

They arrived at this conclusion after reviewing medical records from the Florida Agency for Health Care Administration. Overall, about 30 percent of women still receive surgical biopsies. Given the fact that needle biopsies are so much less expensive, the team estimated that a 30 percent reduction in surgical biopsies could save the state more than $37 million per year.

Additionally, the tests are less invasive, which saves women pain and recovery time. Overall, the researchers said that their findings show a major need for healthcare providers to change the way they handle abnormal breast cancer test results.

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