On this CT, the arrow
indicates a small area
of abnormality within
the liver.

This image shows
the same area during
a CT directed biopsy.
Note the needle in
the area of

Imaging Guided Biopsy/ Abscess Drainage

One of the most beneficial techniques used by the interventional radiologist is performing the biopsy of a mass or draining a collection of fluid within the body without the need for surgery. This is commonly done using a variety of imaging methods, including CT,  ultrasound, and fluoroscopy.

Using one of these methods for visualizing the mass or fluid collection, the radiologist can guide a thin needle into the area in question, avoiding other vital organs, and obtain fluid or tissue for diagnostic testing.

In the case of an abscess, a thin wire can be placed through the needle, over which a small tube (catheter) can be inserted to drain the fluid without the need for surgery. Most areas of the body can be safely reached in this way. The need for surgery can be avoided, and no hospital stay is required in most cases.

Following is a description of the some of the procedures RCT physicians perform, along with images that show the dramatic findings and results produced using these techniques. 

  • Lung biopsy

  • Used for the diagnosis of a nodule or mass within the chest.
  • Biopsy of an Abdominal or Pelvic Mass

  • Using ultrasound or CT, abnormal nodules or masses almost anywhere within the abdomen or pelvis can be safely reached with a small needle. Small amounts of tissue are obtained through the needle, and are used by the pathologist to make a diagnosis.
  • Drainage of an Abdominal or Pelvic Fluid Collection

  • A catheter is placed onto a fluid collection to drain this fluid without the need for surgery. The catheter is usually left in place for several days, and is then easily removed.

Imaging guided biopsy can be used to biopsy abnormal masses or fluid collections identified on  x-ray, CT scans, or ultrasound.

Diagnostic Angiography

Peripheral Angioplasty

Venous Intervention &
Dialysis Access Management

Central Venous Access Catheters


Interventional Neuroradiology


Imaging Guided Biopsy/Abscess Drainage

Biliary Intervention for
Disorders of the Liver

GU Intervention

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