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Collection and Handling of Thoracic Small Biopsy and Cytology Specimens for Ancillary Studies

Background

With the advances in minimally invasive sampling techniques, laboratories can perform multiple ancillary studies on small biopsy and cytology specimens to help in the diagnosis and management of pulmonary pathology. To provide treating physicians with valuable diagnostic, predictive, and prognostic information from small biopsy and cytology specimens, it is critical to establish evidence-based recommendations for the appropriate collection, handling, and triage for relevant ancillary tests.

The “Collection and Handling of Thoracic Small Biopsy and Cytology Specimens for Ancillary Studies” guideline divides the recommendations into six main categories: Endobronchial Ultrasound Guided Transbronchial Procedures, Transthoracic Procedures, Bronchoscopic Procedures, Pleural Effusions, Considerations for Ancillary Studies During Malignant Investigations, and Considerations for Ancillary Studies During Non-malignant Investigations. It also addresses common variables that impact specimen adequacy and diagnostic yield such as:

  • needle gauge
  • number of passes
  • how the content of the needle is expelled
  • use of fixatives
  • when to employ rapid on-site evaluation

Guideline Information

Guideline Status: Active
Early Online Release:
May 12, 2020

Guideline Tools & Resources

External Endorsement

  • American Society of Chest Physicians (CHEST)
  • American Society of Cytopathology (ASC)
  • American Thoracic Society (ATS)
  • Association for Molecular Pathology (AMP)
  • Papanicolaou Society of Cytopathology (PSC)
  • Pulmonary Pathology Society (PPS)
  • Society of Interventional Radiology (SIR)
  • Society of Thoracic Radiology (STR)

Collaborators

  • CHEST
  • ACS
  • ATS
  • AMP
  • PSC
  • PPS
  • SIR
  • STR

Review more upcoming CAP evidence-based guidelines by the Pathology and Laboratory Quality Center.

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