OBJECTIVE: To assess the sensitivity and specificity of pancreatic fine needle aspiration. STUDY DESIGN: Two hundred five fine needle aspirates were obtained from 149 patients over seven years. After excluding 40 patients lacking biopsy or follow-up, 125 aspirates from 109 patients were selected to analyze the accuracy of this method (male:female ratio, 1.4:1; age range 43-79 years). RESULTS: The cytologic diagnosis was true positive in 50 studies (45.9%), false positive in 0, true negative in 25 (22.9%), false negative in 19 (17.4%) and suspicious for malignancy in 17 (15.6%); 14 aspirations (12.8%) yielded material unsatisfactory for a diagnosis. Of the 17 suspicious studies, 15 were from patients in whom a malignancy was confirmed later. The other two patients had chronic pancreatitis. CONCLUSION: The efficiency was 79.8%, sensitivity 72.5%, and specificity and predictive value of a positive result 100%. Cell blocks provided sufficient material in 96.8% of cases and smears in 90.4%. No major complications were reported after fine needle aspiration. © 1996 The International Academy of Cytology Acta Cytologica.
- Aspiration biopsy
- Pancreatic neoplasms