Better Thyroid Biopsy

When you need an accurate thyroid biopsy, where should you go?
Stony Brook Radiology’s highly trained, board-certified radiologists use the latest interventional imaging techniques to carefully diagnose and treat thyroid gland conditions.

Our ultrasound-guided biopsy uses high-frequency sound waves to make a real-time image of the thyroid. The radiologist uses the image to target where the thin, fine biopsy needle is inserted into the abnormal area of the thyroid. The needle draws (aspirates) a small number of cells from the abnormality. The thyroid cells are placed on a slide and viewed through a microscope, by a pathologist who determines if the sampled area is benign or cancerous.

The ultrasound guidance enables a more accurate diagnosis. For the patient, this type of biopsy is much less invasive than a surgical biopsy, is less likely to leave a scar, does not require radiation, and does not require general anesthesia. The procedure usually takes 30 minutes, and patients go home the same day.

Interventional radiology is a subspecialty of radiology. Our doctors train for at least six years after medical school, to develop the skilled expertise to perform image-guided biopsies. Their training includes four years of learning how to image the body, plus an additional year or two becoming an expert in the use of imaging to optimize thyroid biopsies and other minimally invasive procedures.

Ultrasound-guided thyroid biopsy is just one of the sophisticated diagnostic tools available only at an academic medical center like Stony Brook Medicine.