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Endobronchial ultrasound-guided fine-needle aspiration and liquid-based thin-layer cytology
  1. W A H Wallace1,
  2. H M Monaghan1,
  3. D M Salter1,
  4. M A Gibbons2,
  5. K M Skwarski2
  1. 1Department of Pathology, Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh, University Hospitals Division, Lothian Health and Division of Pathology, College of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine, Edinburgh University, Edinburgh, UK
  2. 2Department of Respiratory Medicine, Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh, University Hospitals Division, Lothian Health and Division of Pathology, College of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine, Edinburgh University, Edinburgh, UK
  1. Correspondence to:
    Dr W A H Wallace
    Department of Pathology, Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh, 51 Little France Crescent, Edinburgh EH16 4SA, UK; william.wallace{at}luht.scot.nhs.uk

Abstract

Background: Optimal management of patients with lung cancer requires accurate cell typing of tumours and staging at the time of diagnosis. Endobronchial ultrasound-guided lymph node aspiration as a method of diagnosing and staging lung cancer is a relatively new technique.

Aim: To report the use of liquid-based-thin-layer cytology for the processing and reporting of these specimens.

Methods: The specimens obtained from 80 patients were processed using the ThinPrep system, with the remainder of the samples being processed as a cell block.

Results: 40 of the 81 procedures yielded malignant cells (30 non-small cell carcinoma, 8 small-cell carcinoma and 2 combined small-cell carcinoma/non-small-cell carcinoma). The cell blocks were found to contain sufficient material to allow the immunohistochemical characterisation of tumour cells with a range of antibodies.

Conclusion: The use of liquid-based-thin-layer cytological techniques provides high-quality specimens for diagnostic purposes. When used in conjunction with cell blocks, sufficient material may be obtained to allow immunohistochemical studies to confirm the tumour cell type. Given the current move towards centralisation of pathology services, this approach gives the pathologist high-quality specimens without the need for direct onsite support at the time of the procedure.

  • EBUS–FNA, endobronchial ultrasound fine-needle aspiration
  • PAP, Papanicolaou
  • TTF1, thyroid transcription factor1

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Footnotes

  • Published Online First 30 June 2006

  • Competing interests: KMS has received equipment and educational grants for travel from KeyMed (Medical and Industrial Equipment) WAHW, HMM, DMS and MAG have no financial or other interests in the material published.

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