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Acta Cytol. 2001 Sep-Oct;45(5):761-4.

Fine needle aspiration biopsy of anaplastic thyroid carcinoma developing from a Hürthle cell tumor: a case report.

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Department of Family Medicine, University of Western Ontario, Canada.



Anaplastic thyroid carcinoma is a highly malignant tumor in elderly people with a long history of multinodular goiter and is usually associated with a rapidly fatal clinical evolution. The tumor often develops as a result of anaplastic transformation of a slowly growing papillary carcinoma or follicular neoplasm.


An 85-year-old woman had a multinodular goiter and had been asymptomatic, with a normal white blood cell count and chest radiograph three months prior to her hospital admission for the treatment. The tumor presented with low grade fever, leukocytosis, multiple metastatic lung nodules and enlargement of the intrathoracic thyroid in a period of three months, causing compression of the esophagus and trachea. Despite a total thyroidectomy, the tumor recurred within one month and caused dysphagia and death.


FNAB permitted the diagnosis of an anaplastic thyroid carcinoma arising from an intrathoracic Hürthle cell tumor.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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