CT or Ultrasound Guided Biopsy and Drainage Procedures

Please note: This is an interventional radiology procedure. A specially trained doctor called an Interventional Radiologist will use a CT machine or an Ultrasound to guide him to a specific target. Typically, the target is a collection of fluid to be drained or an area of concern within the body that must be biopsied for further study. Generally, prior scans, ultrasounds or x-rays of affected areas will need to be viewed by the doctor before scheduling of these procedures can be completed.


  • Depending upon the area of concern, you may be required to lie on your side, your back or your stomach.
  • A CT or Ultrasound is used to scan the area of concern.
  • The skin over the site is cleaned. A local anesthetic is applied to numb the skin.
  • The site is accessed with a straight needle. Biopsies are taken as necessary. In some cases a thin tube is exchanged with the needle to drain a collection of fluid.


  • In most cases, you will arrive 90 minutes prior to your scheduled procedure for preparation with a prescription if your doctor has given one to you.
  • Have nothing by mouth after the midnight prior to your exam.
  • Blood work is required prior to most guided procedures.
  • A nurse will obtain vital signs during the procedure.
  • A nurse will call you to obtain health history, complete the scheduling process, and answer questions.
  • A radiologist will interview you for health information


  • Depending on the procedure, your total stay may be as short as 2 hours or as long as 8.
  • You must have a driver.
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