(Fine needle aspiration cytology)
- FNAC (Fine needle aspiration cytology) from breast mass: sensitivity
95% & specificity 98%.
However, it should not be used for diagnosing lymph node metastasis (only
biopsy). One drawback of FNAC is that it cannot differentiate
between invasive and insitu cancers as only cells are seen and the
architecture cannot be evaluated as in biopsies. Aspiration of a simple benign breast cyst should yield non-bloody fluid and result in complete resolution of the lesion.
Ultrasound / stereotactic core biopsy
This technique is helpful in cases where there are findings in
the mammography. A wire or needle guided lumpectomy can follow this
An excisional biopsy, in which the entire breast mass is removed,
definitively establishes the diagnosis. When the mass is extremely
large, an incisional biopsy (which entails removal of only a portion
of the mass) may be more appropriate.
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Ductal lavage is currently being developed and analyzed
as a minimally invasive tool to identify cellular atypia within
breast ducts in women who are already at high risk for developing
breast cancer. Preliminary results indicate that this method has a
low sensitivity and specificity (Journal of the National Cancer