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Tissue marker, implantable, any type, each

HCPCS code

Tissue Marker, Implantable, Any Type, Each (A4648)

Name of the Procedure:

  • Common Names: Tissue marker implantation, Biopsy marker, Clip marker.
  • Technical/Medical Terms: Implantable tissue marker placement, Radiographic marker insertion.


A tissue marker implantation is a procedure where a small device is placed in the body to mark a specific area of tissue. This is often done during a biopsy to help healthcare providers locate the tissue for future treatment or follow-up imaging.


  • Conditions Addressed: Breast cancer or other solid tumors, areas of abnormal tissue discovered during imaging studies.
  • Goals/Outcomes: To provide a precise location marker for subsequent treatments, such as surgery or radiation therapy, and to assist with monitoring the targeted tissue over time.


  • Suspicious areas identified during imaging studies (e.g., mammograms, MRIs).
  • Patients undergoing biopsy to mark the exact location of the tissue sampled.
  • Individuals scheduled for surgical or radiation treatments requiring precise targeting.


  • Pre-procedure Instructions: Follow any specific instructions provided by your healthcare provider, which may include fasting or medication adjustments.
  • Diagnostic Tests: Imaging studies and possibly a biopsy to identify the exact location needing the marker.

Procedure Description

  1. The patient is positioned appropriately based on the area to be marked.
  2. Local anesthesia is applied to numb the area where the marker will be inserted.
  3. Using imaging guidance, such as ultrasound, stereotactic (mammography), or MRI, the healthcare provider places a small needle or applicator into the identified area.
  4. The tissue marker is deployed through the needle into the tissue.
  5. The needle or applicator is removed, and pressure is applied to minimize bleeding.
  6. A small bandage is applied to cover the insertion site.

Tools/Technology: Needles or applicators compatible with the marker type used, imaging equipment for guidance.

Anesthesia: Local anesthesia is typically used.


  • The procedure usually takes between 15 to 30 minutes.


  • The procedure is performed in a hospital, outpatient clinic, or specialized surgical center.


  • Healthcare Professionals: Radiologist, surgeon, or specialized nurse.
  • Support Staff: Nurses and possibly a technologist to manage imaging equipment.

Risks and Complications

  • Common Risks: Minor bleeding or bruising, discomfort at the insertion site.
  • Rare Risks: Infection, allergic reaction to anesthesia, marker migration.
  • Management: Antibiotics for infection, pain relief medications, potential repositioning of the marker if it migrates.


  • Expected Benefits: Accurate localization of tissue abnormalities, aiding in effective treatment planning.
  • Timeline: Benefits are realized immediately with clearer guidance for subsequent procedures.


  • Post-procedure Care: Keep the insertion site clean and dry, monitor for signs of infection.
  • Recovery Time: Generally quick, with most patients resuming normal activities shortly after.
  • Follow-up: Appointments for imaging or treatment planning.


  • Other Treatment Options: Traditional biopsy without marker placement, imaging follow-ups without a marker, or surgical removal of the suspicious area.
  • Pros and Cons: Each alternative has its benefits and limitations, often lacking the precision and ease of subsequent treatment that a tissue marker provides.

Patient Experience

During the procedure, the patient may feel slight pressure or a pinch when the needle is inserted. Post-procedure, there may be minor discomfort or bruising at the site, managed with over-the-counter pain medications and ice packs.

Overall, placing a tissue marker is a straightforward and beneficial procedure, aiding in the precise location and treatment of tissue abnormalities.

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