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J Cytol. 2011 Jul;28(3):103-7. doi: 10.4103/0970-9371.83463.

Fine needle aspiration cytology of epididymal nodules.

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Department of Pathology, TN Medical College & B Y L Nair Hospital, Mumbai, India.



The incidence of non neoplastic lesions are much more common in epididymis. Clinically, epididymal nodules are easily accessible to fine needle aspiration cytology (FNAC) procedure. There are very few literature reports documenting the role of cytology in evaluation of epididymal nodules. Thus, we studied patients presenting with palpable epididymis nodules in the out patient department (OPD) from a tertiary care general hospital.


This study is aimed to put forth the diagnostic utility of FNAC in palpable lesions of epididymis.


A total of 40 palpable epididymal nodules were aspirated as a routine OPD procedure as part of this study. Smears were fixed in isopropyl alcohol and air dried. In all the cases, wet fixed papanicoloau stained and air dried giemsa stained smears were studied. Zeihl Neelsen stain was performed in cases which yielded caseous aspirate.


Except for two cases of adenomatoid tumor of epididymis all other lesions were nonneoplastic and included 14 cases (35%) of tuberculous granulomatous inflammation, 10 (25%) cystic nodules (9 spermatoceles and 1 encysted hydrocele), 5 (12.5%) of nonspecific inflammations, 3 (7.5%) filarial infection, 3 (7.5%) sperm granulomas and 3 (7.5%) adenomatous hyperplasia of rete testes. Except for the two tumors, one adenomatous hyperplasia and one tuberculous lesion, no other lesion was excised. Follow up and response to therapy was available in 78% patients and resolution indicated appropriateness of the diagnosis


Thus, as most of the lesions in epididymis are non neoplastic responding to medical line of treatment and FNAC served to aid diagnosis of non specific inflammation and avoid surgical excision in most cases.


Epididymal nodules; inflammatory; non-neoplastic; tuberculous

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