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CYTOPATHOLOGY

Cytopathology is a branch of pathology that deals with manifestations of disease at the cellular level. This is a field that is gaining tremendous momentum all over the world due to its speed, accuracy and cost effectiveness.

USES:

  1. Diagnostic aid as an alternative to tissue biopsy that drives treatment decisions.

2. As a screening tool; For eg, Pap smear for cervical cancer screening

3. As a follow-up for different diseases once an initial diagnosis has been made

4. For determination of different prognostic factors in cancer diagnosis

ADVANTAGES OF USING CYTOPATHOLOGY:

·      Safe

·      Simple

·      Cost effective

·      Quick

BRANCHES OF CYTOPATHOLOGY

Exfoliative cytology

The samples represent cells that exfoliate from superficial or mucosal surfaces. This includes:

  • Gynecological samples: Eg; Pap smear samples for Cervical cancer screening, HPV testing etc
  • Respiratory/exfoliative cytology: Eg; Sputum samples, Bronchoalveolar lavage etc
  • Urine sample
  • Body fluid: Eg; pleural fluid, pericardial fluid, peritoneal fluid, and cerebrospinal fluid  etc
  • Discharge cytology: Eg; Discharge from wound site, Nipple discharge etc
  • Scrape cytology: Eg; Skin scraping

 

 

Fine Needle Aspiration Cytology (FNAC)

  • This is a simple technique to obtain diagnostic cellular/ tissue material using a fine bore needle. It is safe, relatively easy, accurate and in many cases can be a less invasive alternative to tissue biopsy.