Concordance of bilateral temporal artery biopsy in giant cell arteritis

J Neuroophthalmol. 2000 Sep;20(3):216-8. doi: 10.1097/00041327-200020030-00012.


Objective: To determine whether the diagnostic sensitivity of bilateral temporal artery biopsy is superior to that of unilateral biopsy in cases of suspected temporal arteritis.

Materials and methods: A retrospective analysis of the results of 60 bilateral temporal artery biopsies examined in an ophthalmic pathology laboratory.

Results: The histopathologic diagnosis in 13% of the biopsy pairs was discordant. There was a 5% chance of obtaining a positive biopsy result on the side opposite an initially negative biopsy result.

Conclusions: Bilateral temporal artery biopsy is 5% more likely than unilateral biopsy to detect the characteristic histopathologic findings in patients with temporal arteritis.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Biopsy
  • Female
  • Functional Laterality
  • Giant Cell Arteritis / diagnosis*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Temporal Arteries / pathology*