Assessment of Diagnostic Accuracy of Fine Needle Aspiration Cytology in the Benign and Malignant Palpable Breast Lesions and its Concordance with the Histopathological Correlation in Regards to the Age, Sex, Locus and Circumstances


Objectives: To assess the diagnostic reliability of fine needle aspiration cytology (FNAC) of the breast and to determine the use of FNAC to distinguish between benign and malignant lesions of the breast and its relationship to histopathological examination with respect to their age, sex, locus, and circumstances.

Study Plan: The current study was conducted ambiferously in the Department of Pathology of a 600-bed tertiary care referral hospital in Mangalore, Karnataka, India, from January 2015 to March 2017 among women who reported breast lesions. Age group, location, lesion duration, and concomitant regional lymphadenopathy were study parameters. We enrolled 200 individuals in this study whose fine needle aspiration cytology materials were available. Of these 200 cases, 54 patients had access to surgical materials, and cyto-histological correlation was performed on those patients. Results: Out of 200 cases of breast lumps that underwent fine-needle aspiration cytology, 160 cases were determined to be benign breast lesions, 34 cases to be malignant breast lesions, 4 cases to be classified as unsatisfactory, and the remaining 2 cases were determined to be suspicious. 54 cases out of the 200 total cases had histological examinations done. On cytology, 30 of these 54 cases were determined to be benign breast lesions, 22 to be malignant breast lesions, and the final two were reported as unsatisfactory and suspicious of malignancy. However, on histological examination, 32 of these 54 cases were determined to be benign breast lesions, and the remaining 22 to be malignant breast lesions. Accordingly, the accuracy, sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, negative predictive value, and accuracy were 90.9%, 93.75%, 90.9%, 93.75%, and 92.6%. In conclusion, the accuracy of fine needle aspiration cytology of breast lesions is limited. However, it has unique characteristics like speed, ease, and non-intrusiveness. Due to the possibility of false negative and false positive diagnoses, it shouldn’t be utilised as the exclusive diagnostic method for palpable breast lesions. It would be better if it were used in conjunction with other clinical and radiological diagnostic modalities, like mammography, ultrasonography, and physical examination.

Author(s) Details:

Suhas K. Thazha,
Department of Medical Laboratory Technology, MIMS College of Allied Health Sciences, ASTER MIMS Academy, Kerala University of Health Sciences, Kerala, India.

Hilda Fernandez,
Department of Pathology, Father Muller Medical College, Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Sciences, Karnataka, India.

Sameesh S. Rengan,
Vocational Higher Secondary Education, Kerala, India.

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Keywords: Breast lesion, fine needle aspiration cytology (FNAC), open biopsy, accuracy

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