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Lymph Node Biopsy

Lymph Node Biopsy

Lymph nodes are small swellings all over the body which are involved in helping the body to fight infection. There are a large number in the neck and they very commonly get bigger when a child has a cough or a cold. After the infection has settled the lymph nodes shrink back down again but don’t always disappear completely.

Sometimes lymph nodes appear or grow bigger and it is not obvious why this is happening. In this case a lymph node may need to be removed so that it can be sent off to the laboratory and get looked at under a microscope to find out exactly what is going on.

This procedure is called a lymph node biopsy.

  • A general anaesthetic is required to do the biopsy and a small cut in the skin over the lymph node will need to be made.
  • The node is then removed taking care to avoid any of the nerves or blood vessels that also pass through the neck.
  • Stitches which dissolve themselves and so don’t need to be removed are used to close the skin at the end of the operation. 
  • It is most likely that your child will be able to go home the same day and then come to outpatients in a week’s time for review.
  • The results of the biopsy would be available in a few days.