How to Get a Second Opinion on a Biopsy

If you decide to get a second opinion on your biopsy results, your doctor or hospital can usually arrange to have your slides and a case summary sent to a second pathologist—or you can make arrangements yourself by following these steps.

Check your insurance or Medicare to see if second pathology opinions are covered.

• Consider having your slides sent to a National Cancer Institute–designated cancer center (find one here) or to an academic institution (neither needs to be local).

• Contact the center to find out whether they provide this service. If they do, ask about the cost and shipping instructions.

• Contact the pathology department of the hospital where you had your biopsy and ask them to send your slides to the second pathologist.

For more information on cancer and biopsies, see Should You Trust Breast Biopsy Results and our Cancer Guide.

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HealthAfter50 was published by the University of California, Berkeley, School of Public Health, providing up-to-date, evidence-based research and expert advice on the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of a wide range of health conditions affecting adults in middle age and beyond. It was previously part of Remedy Health Media's network of digital and print publications, which also include HealthCentral; HIV/AIDS resources The Body and The Body Pro; the UC Berkeley Wellness Letter; and the Berkeley Wellness website. All content from HA50 merged into in 2018.