Aspiration means to draw in or out using a sucking motion. It has two meanings:
- Breathing in a foreign object (for example, sucking food into the airway).
- A medical procedure that removes something from an area of the body. These substances can be air, body fluids, or bone fragments. An example is removing ascites fluid from the belly area.
Aspiration as a medical procedure may also be used to remove tissue samples for a biopsy. This is sometimes called a needle biopsy or aspirate. For example, the aspiration of a breast lesion.
A biopsy is the removal of a small piece of tissue for laboratory examination.Read Article Now Book Mark Article
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Aspiration - illustration
The term aspiration can refer to the process of inhaling purposely. Aspiration also refers to withdrawing using suction, such as in a needle aspiration that would be done to remove tissues for sampling.
Review Date: 10/20/2022
Reviewed By: Linda J. Vorvick, MD, Clinical Professor, Department of Family Medicine, UW Medicine, School of Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle, WA. Also reviewed by David C. Dugdale, MD, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.