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Acta Cytol. 2015;59(4):305-10. doi: 10.1159/000439398. Epub 2015 Sep 5.

Gastrointestinal Endoscopic Ultrasound-Guided Fine-Needle Aspiration Biopsy Specimens: Adequate Diagnostic Yield and Accuracy Can Be Achieved without On-Site Evaluation.

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Division of Anatomic Pathology, Vancouver General Hospital, Vancouver, B.C., Canada.



Endoscopic ultrasound-guided fine-needle aspiration biopsy (EUS-FNA) is the preferred method for biopsying the gastrointestinal tract, and rapid on-site cytological evaluation is considered standard practice. Our institution does not perform on-site evaluation; this study analyzes our overall diagnostic yield, accuracy, and incidence of nondiagnostic cases to determine the validity of this strategy.


Data encompassing clinical information, procedural records, and cytological assessment were analyzed for gastrointestinal EUS-FNA procedures (n = 85) performed at Vancouver General Hospital from January 2012 to January 2013. We compared our results with those of studies that had on-site evaluation and studies that did not have on-site evaluation.


Eighty-five biopsies were performed in 78 patients, from sites that included the pancreas, the stomach, the duodenum, lymph nodes, and retroperitoneal masses. Malignancies were diagnosed in 45 (53%) biopsies, while 24 (29%) encompassed benign entities. Suspicious and atypical results were recorded in 8 (9%) and 6 (7%) cases, respectively. Only 2 (2%) cases received a cytological diagnosis of 'nondiagnostic'. Our overall accuracy was 72%, our diagnostic yield was 98%, and our nondiagnostic rate was 2%. Our results did not significantly differ from those of studies that did have on-site evaluation.


Our study highlights that adequate diagnostic accuracy can be achieved without on-site evaluation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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