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Below are Kelsey-Seybold's guidelines for before, during and after a Breast MRI Biopsy


Pre-Biopsy Instructions:

  • Arrive 30 minutes prior to your scheduled appointment to check in and take care of any co-payments as needed by your insurance company.
  • If you are claustrophobic please contact your physician to obtain any medications for you to take prior to the procedure.
  • If you take a medication prior to the procedure you will need to have a driver. You will need to arrive 1 hour prior to the MRI procedure for you to sign the consent and paperwork for the procedure. Do not take this medication until after you have signed the consent form.
  • Do not take any aspirin, non-steroidal anti inflammatory drugs, coumadin or any other blood thinners for 7 days prior to biopsy. If you take Plavix this blood thinning medication would need to be stopped for 10 days prior to biopsy. If any of these medications have been prescribed to you by your doctor, you will need to get that doctor’s approval prior to stopping the medications.
  • Besides the blood-thinning medication, do not disrupt any medication schedule. We want you to continue taking your blood pressure, diabetes, thyroid, cholesterol medications, etc. with a small sip of water. If you take insulin you may cover the insulin taken with a light snack 3 hours prior to the procedure or as directed by your physician.
  • Do not eat or drink for 4 hours prior to your MRI biopsy.
  • If you weigh over 300 pounds, please notify us. You will not be able to have the procedure at Kelsey-Seybold Clinic.
  • If you are 60 years or older, take blood pressure medication, diabetic or have any renal problems you will need to have some lab tests done within 6 weeks prior to the procedure.
  • Please inform your physician if you are pregnant.
  • If you have a pacemaker or defibrillator you may not have this procedure.
  • Please inform the technologist if you have an aneurysm clip, have had brain surgery, have any implanted devices, breast tissue expanders or neuro stimulators.
  • Because the technology uses strong magnets, it is essential that you remove anything metal — jewelry, snaps, belts, earrings, zippers, etc. — before the test. You may choose to leave your jewelry at home.
  • Wear a loose top to make room for an ice pack and ACE wrap that will be placed over biopsy area.

Breast MRI Biopsy Procedure:

  • The clinical staff inserts an intravenous (IV) line into a vein in your hand or arm for the contrast material to be given intravenously.
  • Please advise the clinical staff if you have allergies to gadolinium or iodine prior to the procedure.
  • You will lie face down with your arms extended forward on a moveable exam table. The affected breast or breasts will be positioned into openings in the table. Your breasts are slightly compressed. Your head is supported on a frame (like a masseuse frame) with mirrors situated so that the surrounding area may be seen.
  • As the test starts the table will proceed to enter the MRI machine feet first. Your breast will be scanned and then the contrast will be injected.
  • You will be scanned a second time to include the images with contrast.
  • A local anesthetic will be injected into the breast (lidocaine) – you will feel a slight pin prick from the needl
  • A very small nick is made in the skin at the site where the biopsy needle is to be inserted.
  • The radiologist then inserts the needle, advances it to the location of the abnormality and MR imaging is performed to verify its position.
  • There are sounds associated with the biopsy device.
  • Tissue samples are then removed through the needle using suction.
  • A small marker may be placed at the site so that it can be located in the future if necessary.
  • Once the biopsy is complete, pressure will be applied for a minimum of 10 minutes to stop any bleeding. The opening in the skin is covered with surgical tape (steri-strips) and a gauze dressing. No sutures are needed.
  • A mammogram will be performed after the procedure to document the area of biopsy.
  • The entire process takes about 2 hours.

Post biopsy instructions:

  • Expect written instructions post procedure.
  • You may experience some bruising and tenderness after the biopsy.
  • The previously discussed blood thinning medications should be avoided 24 hours after procedure to avoid risks for complications.
  • You should avoid heavy lifting (10 lbs or over) and strenuous activity for 24 hours after procedure.
  • Utilize an ice pack over the biopsy site for several hours (30 minutes on and 30 minutes off). Place ice pack in the freezer when not in use.
  • Utilize ace bandage provided to minimize breast movement for 12-24 hours, as directed.
  • Keep biopsy site dry for 48 hours. You may shower after 48 hours, but do not submerge area until the steri-strips fall off. This usually occurs in 5 to 6 days.
  • Leave gauze dressing in place and keep biopsy site dry for 48 hours. Remove the gauze dressing after 48 hours; you may shower at this time but do not submerge area until the steri-strips fall off. This usually occurs in 5 to 6 days.
  • If desired, you may use a topical antibiotic at the biopsy site.
    You should receive your biopsy results within 10 days. If you have not received your results within 10 days, please contact your doctor.


If you have any questions, concerns or begin to have any serious problems, please contact your physician. You may also contact the Kelsey-Seybold Contact Center, which is available 24 hours a day, at 713-442-0000.​