Breast cyst aspiration is a very useful procedure for the diagnosis of breast cancer. Unlike many other tests, this test will tell one’s doctor a great deal of information immediately. Breast cysts, like any possible symptom of breast cancer, should be taken very seriously as breast cancer remains the second most commonly diagnosed form of cancer in women.
A breast cyst is a small sac filled with fluid that is found in the breast. These are usually benign and are very common in women. In some cases though, these can lead to breast cancer so they need to be taken seriously. The aspiration of a breast cyst involves using a needle to pierce the cyst and drain it of all of its fluid. This can lead to a number of discoveries on the part of one’s doctor. In most cases, the fluid will drain and the cyst will heal. If the cyst refills with fluid though, this can be an issue and should be discussed with one’s doctor.
While the aspiration of breast cyst is important to have it heal, the doctor will also use the drained tissue or fluid to test the cyst to make sure that it does not contain any cancerous cells. The doctor should be able to tell immediately after piercing the cyst with the needle if it is a cyst or a tumor. Other signs can be indicative of different possible outcomes though. If the lump contains watery fluid and is properly drained, the doctor will not require any further testing. If, on the other hand, the lump contains bloody fluid, or the lump in question is solid, then the doctor will take a biopsy or drain some of the bloody fluid and send it to the lab to be tested for cancer.
Generally, the aspiration of a cyst is a relatively painless procedure. The doctor may use a numbing anesthetic around the area that will be pierced with the needle, but anesthesia is rarely necessary. The doctor may also do a mammogram or ultrasound prior to the procedure to ensure that he knows the exact location of the cyst. Once the cyst has been pierced, the doctor will drain it of all of its fluid. There are very few risks involved with the procedure and it is performed on a fairly regular basis. One should expect a small bruise surrounding the area where the needle pierced the breast but no other side effects.
After the aspiration of breast cyst, one needs to go back to return for a follow-up visit within four to six weeks. This follow-up is important as the doctor will be able to see how the cyst responded to the aspiration. In most cases, the cyst will heal, but the doctor will be able to tell if there are any problems.
As they can have a similar appearance to breast cancer, one should consult one’s doctor for a breast cyst aspiration at the first sign of any cysts in the breast.