Endoscopic ultrasonography-guided brushing increases cellular diagnosis of pancreatic cysts: A prospective study

Dig Liver Dis. 2010 Dec;42(12):877-81. doi: 10.1016/j.dld.2010.07.009. Epub 2010 Sep 1.


Background: The diagnosis of pancreatic cystic lesions is still a challenge.

Aim: To prospectively investigate the usefulness and safety of EUS-guided cytology brushing (EUS BR) in the cellular diagnosis of pancreatic cysts.

Methods: Cysts >15mm were sampled with a 19G needle. The fluid was aspirated and processed for cytology. The brush was introduced to scrub the cystic wall and processed as standard brushings. Antibiotic prophylaxis was administered. Complications were assessed in the first 24h and 7 days after the procedure.

Results: 30 patients were included. In 8 patients the technique failed for technical reasons. EUS BR provided with a cellular diagnosis in 20/22 cases (91%). The EUS BR was superior to the aspirated fluid for detecting diagnostic cells (73% vs. 36%, p=0.08) and mucinous cells (50% vs. 18%, p=0.016). In the 8 patients operated on, the specimen was consistent with EUS BR diagnosis. Three patients (10%) had complications, one of them a subacute retroperitoneal haemorrhage in a patient on anticoagulation therapy who died for complications 1 month later.

Conclusions: EUS BR increases cellular diagnosis of pancreatic cystic lesions as compared with fluid analysis, mainly in mucinous lesions. Its use is not recommended in patients under anticoagulation therapy.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Biopsy, Needle
  • Cytodiagnosis
  • Cytological Techniques
  • Endosonography
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Pancreatic Cyst / diagnostic imaging*
  • Pancreatic Cyst / pathology*
  • Pancreatic Neoplasms / diagnostic imaging*
  • Pancreatic Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Prospective Studies