Nigerian Journal of Postgraduate Medicine

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Diagnosis Of Thyroid Enlargement: Use Of Fine Needle Aspiration Cytology

EAO Afolayan, A Mohammed


One hundred and ten Fine Needle Aspiration Biopsies (FNAC) obtained from 87 patients with thyroid enlargement or nodules were retrospectively reviewed. Aspiration biopsy was accomplished using 21-gauge needle attached with 20-ml plastic syringe. There were 14 males and 73 females involved in the study. Sixty- four (73.6%) cases were nonneoplastic while neoplastic lesions accounted for 19 (21.8%), cases. Three (3.4%) smears were unsatisfactory. Colloid goitre, 57 (65.5%)
cases, dominated the diagnosis and was followed by follicular carcinoma with 9 (10.3%) cases. The cytological diagnosis could be verified by histology in 68 cases. We had one false-positive and two false-negative reports giving a diagnostic accuracy of 95.6%. One case was complicated by mild haemorrhage. We recommend fine needle aspiration cytology of the thyroid gland as the initial diagnostic investigation in the evaluation of thyroid gland enlargement.

Keywords: Aspiration cytology, thyroid, enlargement, nodules.
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