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Excisional Mass Biopsy Specialist

Ortho 1 Medical Group

Orthopedic Specialists located in La Jolla, CA & Chula Vista, CA

Orthopedic specialists frequently treat soft-tissue masses under your skin, on tendons, and in muscles. At Ortho 1 Medical Group, the expert surgical team carefully examines the tumor and runs diagnostic tests. They then do an excisional mass biopsy to remove the tumor and analyze the tissues. Call the office in San Diego, Chula Vista, La Jolla, or Coronado, California, today or use the online booking feature to schedule an appointment.

Excisional Mass Biopsy Q&A

What is an excisional mass biopsy?

An excisional mass biopsy is a procedure to completely cut out a lump or abnormal mass of soft tissue. You might associate excisional biopsies with cancerous tumors, but you can develop several kinds of benign soft-tissue masses.

Every soft-tissue mass your surgeon excises (cuts out) goes to the lab for a biopsy. Lab technicians thinly slice the tissues, then pathologists examine the pieces under a microscope, identifying any cellular signs of disease.

When would I need an excisional mass biopsy?

These are a few examples of soft-tissues masses frequently excised by the team at Ortho 1 Medical Group:

Ganglion cysts

Cysts are saclike structures that can develop in many places, from under your skin to inside organs. Orthopedic specialists often treat ganglion cysts because they grow over joints and tendons, especially on your wrist and at the bottom of your fingers on the palm-side of your hand.

Ganglion cysts contain synovial fluid, a substance naturally produced by the joint to lubricate it. Though they differ in size, they usually create a visible lump.

Large cysts cause hand pain, tenderness, and can press on nerves. If a cyst compresses a nerve, you can experience severe pain and weakness and have difficulty moving or using your hand and wrist.

Giant cell tumor of the tendon sheath

Giant cell tumors represent the second most common hand tumor (after ganglion cysts). They also appear around your knee, ankle, and foot. These solid masses develop in the tendon’s protective cover (sheath) and can cause numbness or difficulty using your fingers.


Lipomas consist of fat cells encased in a layer of tissue. These soft tumors most often grow between your skin and the muscles beneath your skin. However, they can also grow in muscles, infiltrating the tissues and causing degenerative changes. Lipomas need careful evaluation because they resemble a cancerous liposarcoma.

Periosteal and soft-tissue chondromas

Chondromas are benign tumors made of cartilage or fibrous tissues. Periosteal chondromas grow on bones and often cause swelling and dull pain. Without treatment, these tumors can erode the bone.

Soft-tissue chondromas appear on tendons, often in your toes, feet, fingers, and hands. These tumors cause visible lumps but usually aren’t painful.

What happens during an excisional mass biopsy?

Your surgeon removes a mass during any excision, using a scalpel or other instrument. However, the complexity of the procedure and the kind of anesthesia needed depends on what kind of tumor you have and where it is.

For example, excisions near the skin’s surface need only a local anesthetic. Deeper masses may require a nerve block or general anesthesia.

You can receive expert care for many soft-tissue masses at Ortho 1 Medical Group. Call the nearest office today or use the online booking feature to schedule an appointment.