Critical appraisal of fine needle aspiration cytology in tuberculous lymphadenitis

Acta Cytol. 1992 May-Jun;36(3):391-4.


A cytomorphologic diagnosis of tuberculous lymphadenitis by examination of needle aspirates was made in 560 of 1,471 cases of lymphadenopathy studied over two years. Cytologic features were categorized into four groups: epithelioid clusters with or without Langhans's giant cells without necrosis (32.14%), epithelioid clusters with or without Langhans's giant cells with necrosis (50.35%), occasional epithelioid cells without characteristic necrosis/giant cells (2.85%) and necrosis without epithelioid clusters or Langhans's giant cells (14.64%). While a diagnosis of tuberculous lymphadenitis was offered with confidence in the first two groups, constituting about 82.49% cases, aspirates from the third- and fourth-group patients were subjected to Ziehl-Neelsen staining for acid-fast bacilli, which was positive in 12.5% and 75.6% of cases, respectively.

MeSH terms

  • Biopsy, Needle
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Tuberculosis, Lymph Node / pathology*