Question:

What is a fine needle aspiration (FNA) biopsy and how is this different from a core biopsy?

Answer:

FNA biopsy is when material (cells) are aspirated from an area of interest with a needle and the aspirate is sent to the lab for cytologic evaluation. This is different from a core biopsy where the core of tissue is being obtained. A core biopsy is most often performed with a larger bore needle to gather a larger (core) amount of tissue which is then sent to the lab for histologic evaluation. Look for aspiration vs. core or needle biopsy, and whether the material obtained is sent to cytology or histology.

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