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עמוד בית
Thu, 18.07.24

Original Articles

IMAJ | volume 20

Journal 11, November 2018
pages: 674-678

Surgical Biopsy of Pathologically Enlarged Lymph Nodes: A Reappraisal

Summary

Background:

Enlarged lymph nodes (ELN) pose a great diagnostic challenge. They may represent the first clinical finding of a hematologic disease or other malignancy and may be an indication of a wide range of infectious and non-infectious diseases. Because many patients undergo percutaneous biopsy, surgical excisional biopsy is not often considered.

Objectives:

To analyze indications for a patient's referral for surgical biopsy of ELN and diagnostic steps to follow until referral, and to determine the number of ELN.

Methods:

A retrospective study was conducted of prospectively collected data of patients who underwent surgical biopsy of ELN from January 2004 to December 2013.

Results:

Of 118 patients who underwent surgical biopsy of ELN, only 52 (44%) had needle biopsy (NB) before referral. Lymphoma was diagnosed by NB in 24 (46%) of the referred patients. In patients with a previous diagnosis of lymphoma, NB of ELN yielded a sensitivity of 67% and specificity of 79%. In patients with lymphadenopathy but with no previous history of malignancy, sensitivity for lymphoma was 68% and specificity was 71%. The investigative time period until final diagnosis was 3 months in patients who had NB but only 1.25 months in patients who were referred directly for surgery (P < 0.0001).

Conclusions:

Surgical biopsy of ELN still has a place in the clinical evaluation of patients with ELN. Surgery may significantly reduce the length of investigation and prevent unnecessary diagnostics, especially in patients with suspected lymphoma recurrence.

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