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Acta Cytol. 2003 Mar-Apr;47(2):293-8.

Role of intraoperative smear cytology in the diagnosis of anaplastic oligodendroglioma. A case report.

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  • 1Department of Pathology, Singapore General Hospital, Outram Road, Singapore 169608, Singapore.



While the intraoperative smear cytology of oligodendroglioma is well documented, the cytologic features of anaplastic oligodendroglioma have been described rarely.


A 41-year-old man with a previous history of a brain tumor five years earlier presented with recurrent neurologic symptoms. Radiologic examination revealed a predominantly cystic tumor with solid areas and calcifications arising from the left temporal lobe. Intraoperative smears of the tumor were hypercellular, disclosing loosely cohesive and single cells resembling oligodendrocytes with mitotic activity and moderate anisonucleosis. The background displayed a characteristic vacuolated appearance. Tissue submitted for frozen section showed a tumor with an infiltrative margin with areas of perineuronal satellitosis.


A diagnosis of anaplastic oligodendroglioma can be made intraoperatively with the aid of smear cytology in conjunction with frozen section, assisting intraoperative management.

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