Article Text

Download PDFPDF
Diagnostic accuracy of frozen-section analysis of cancer-containing bladder transurethral resection specimens for the presence of muscularis propria invasion
  1. Rajen Goyal,
  2. Bing Zhu,
  3. Vamsi Parimi,
  4. Xiaoqi Lin,
  5. Stephen M Rohan
  1. Department of Pathology, Northwestern University, Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern Memorial Hospital, Chicago, Illinois, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Stephen M Rohan, Department of Pathology, Northwestern University—Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern Memorial Hospital, Feinberg Pavilion, Room 7-332, 251 E. Huron St., Chicago, IL 60611, USA; s-rohan{at}


Aims Frozen section (FS) consultation is generally an accurate diagnostic modality. At our institution, we are frequently asked to assess transurethral resection specimens (TURBT) at FS for muscularis propria (MP) invasion by carcinoma. This study documents our experience in evaluating cancer-containing TURBT specimens at FS for MP invasion.

Methods 32 TURBT sent for FS from 2008–2010 were identified. The FS and permanent section (PS) diagnoses were reviewed. Cases excluded from the calculation of test performance included: (1) cases without cancer on FS or PS slides, (2) FS diagnosis deferred, (3) cases without MP on FS and subsequent PS slides. Sensitivity (SEN), specificity (SPEC), positive predictive value (PPV), and negative predictive value (NPV) for identifying MP invasion at FS were calculated.

Results In 6 cases, no cancer was present in FS or PS slides (18%). The FS diagnosis was deferred on 3 cases (9%). In one case (3%) MP was not present in the FS or the subsequent PS slides. Of the remaining 22 cases, 2 false positive and 6 false negative diagnoses of MP invasion were identified. The test performance for FS assessment of MP invasion in TURB were SEN=33%, SPEC=84%, PPV=60%, and NPV=64%.

Conclusions Identifying MP invasion on PS can be difficult, and our results suggest that this is more difficult at FS. Though this study is based on small numbers, our results point to the conclusion that examination of TURBT specimens for MP invasion is best done on PS.

  • Bladder
  • Cancer
  • Genitourinary Pathology
  • Histopathology

Statistics from

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.