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Acta Cytol. 2006 Jul-Aug;50(4):466-8.

Preoperative diagnosis of renal angiomyolipoma with fine needle aspiration cytology: a report of 3 cases.

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Arihant Pathology Laboratory, Sri Aurbindo Institute of Medical Sciences, Indore, India.



Angiomyolipoma is a rare benign neoplasm, commonly involving the kidney. Preoperative diagnosis on fine needle aspiration cytology can confirm the diagnosis, reducing the chances of unnecessary surgery.


We studied cases of renal angiomyolipoma (AML) presenting within 1 year with palpable renal masses confirmed on ultrasound to be of renal origin. Fine needle aspiration cytology (FNAC) smears showed a few cohesive syncytial fragments with adipocytes, spindle cells and isolated single cells with foamy cytoplasm; a diagnosis of AML was made. The diagnosis was confirmed on histopathology, which showed mature adipose tissue, tortuous and thick-walled blood vessels lacking elastic tissue lamina and bundles of smooth muscles that seemed to emanate from the blood vessels.


A preoperative diagnosis of renal AML is of great importance for correct management. In fact, when the lesion is small and asymptomatic, a conservative approach may be considered. Partial nephrectomy is possible with masses < 5 cm. Preoperative FNAC along with computed tomographic findings and immunocytochemical analysis of FNAC smears with HNB-45 can confirm the diagnosis of AML, thus preventing unindicated nephrectomy.

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