how long did it take to get your biopsy results?

Posted By
6/21/2011 12:29pm
Replies: 7

every time my husband gets a mole cut off the waiting game ages me years. i dont understand how some people dont find out for 2 weeks - that just seems insane to me. what seems to be typical - 1 week? 1 day? does it just depend on how many other moles the pathologist has to review?


It may depend on where you go, or as you say, how many were removed. I don't know.

My one enlarged, bleeding mole was removed at a Duke Urgent Care by a PA on a Wednesday and the following Thursday I had a voice mail from the dr there not only with my biopsy report but he had already scheduled me to see a mel specialist onc at Duke.

Two weeks, no matter what the circumstances, sounds a bit much to me.

Grace and peace,


When I have a biopsy, I always remind the surgeon that I need the results asap. He then tells the nurse ( in my presence) to make sure it goes to ABC Pathology, as opposed to XYZ pathology. ABC takes one week or less, and the other one takes about 10 days.

So you probably do have a choice of labs. Talk to the surgeon about it. Makes no sense to wait one day longer than necessary.

At every MRI, PET etc, I always ask the tech when the doctor will receive the results. I stress that I NEED the results asap.

In my "virgin" mel days, I would wait until my next appt to get the test results. Now my doctor  understands that I want results asap and she or her nurse calls the same day they get results. We have an understanding that I want the results right away over the phone even if the results are bad.

I am an old lady, short and round with a strange sense of humor. I can pull off almost DEMANDING results asap with politeness, humor and a huge smile.

It works pretty good. Had an MRI last Friday, the tech said my doctor would get the results Monday or Tuesday. I actually got a call from my nurse late Friday afternoon. Good job.

Nicki, Stage 3b

Be strong and take heart, all you who HOPE in the Lord. Ps. 31:24

In my case it took two days on the first mel and five the second, which included the weekend. As others have said, call every few days to get the resuilts as soon as possible, as it been discussed on this board that it may sometimes take three weeks......

It also depends on many things such as location of the lab in relation to where one has the mole removed. I live in lakeland, lab is in Tampa. A 45 min-1 hour drive each way depending on traffic.

Is the pathologist on vacation? Staffing? Holidays? Other vacations? Hours of operation?

What company picks up and returns the samples? How many do they have? How many stops do they make?

When does the derm send them? Today, next day? Certain days of the week?

 Is a second opinion needed? Where will this be?

As others have said, call every few days to get the resuilts as soon as possible.


This information is for general patient educational & information purposes only. It should not be used for diagnosing/treating a health problem or disease. If you have or suspect you may have a health problem, you should consult your healthcare provider.

When my dermatologist does a biopsy, it seems to take a week to 10 days.  He mails out a post card with the results.  I'd like to believe that if it was melanoma, I'd get an immediate phone call.

When I had the lymph node under my arm biopsied, it was done at the local Breast Center.  The samples went out to the lab before I had even left the procedures room, and I had an appointment for the next afternoon to receive the results. I think the doctor already suspected the lymph node was cancerous, however, and requested expedited service.  I don't think that kind of turn-around time is the norm.

"A little ingenuity and a lot of duct tape will solve many problems.",
AKC Agility Judges Guidelines

Usually your local pathology lab will take the most concerning situations first to test which only take a few days.  A mole removal that isn't suspicious could take 2 weeks.  Kinda like when you go to the emergency room! 

Cancer Cannot cripple love, silence courage, destroy friendship, shatter hope or conquer the spirit.

At Mayo I had my preliminary biopsy results back the same day

Advocate for your own treatment.. Stage 4 Melanoma NED Surgery,Radiation, Temodar 300Mg July 2009-March 2010, then "Phase I Study of Anti-PD-1 Human Monoclonal Antibody MDX-1106 and Vaccine Therapy"