Fine-needle cytology (FNC) of 292 palpable orbital and eyelid tumors was performed with a 25-gauge (0.5-mm), 3-cm needle and compared with the histopathologic findings in 286 cases. Among these 286 cases, a concordant diagnosis of malignancy and type was achieved in 249 cases (87%). False positive diagnoses were made in four cases (1.6%) and false negative diagnoses in five cases (1.8%). No complications were encountered. These results led to the conclusion that FNC is an accurate tool in the diagnosis of orbital and eyelid tumors, especially when sampling and interpretation are performed by an experienced pathologist.