False positive diagnosis in conventional and liquid-based cervical specimens

Acta Cytologica
Sharon MountGladwyn Leiman


To examine conventional and liquid-based cervical smears falsely diagnosed as malignant at our institution and to investigate, through cytologic-histologic correlation, factors influencing false positive diagnoses. Cervical cytologic diagnoses of malignancy from May 1, 1995, to April 30, 2001, were retrieved through a computer search. A retrospective review of hospital records and pathology reports was performed. Cases identified as false positives were reviewed and correlated with histologic follow-up specimens. A group of 68 patients with malignancy reported on cervical smears and with histologic follow-up was identified. Conventional smears numbered 32 (47%); the remaining 36 (53%) were liquid-based samples. Of the total, 7 false positive cases (10.3%) were identified in 4 conventional and 3 liquid-based preparations. Cytologic diagnosis in these cases was squamous cell carcinoma in 5 and adenocarcinoma in 2. On histologic follow-up, all 7 patients were ultimately found to have high grade squamous intraepithelial lesions (HSILs) without invasion. Review of the original slides confirmed most, or all, of the following features in all cases: major cellular pleomorphism, extensive cytoplasmic keratinization, intense nuclear pykn...Continue Reading


Aug 25, 2004·Cytopathology : Official Journal of the British Society for Clinical Cytology·C A Waddell
Aug 2, 2006·Cytopathology : Official Journal of the British Society for Clinical Cytology·B KirschnerJ Junge
Jun 29, 2017·Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology : the Journal of the Institute of Obstetrics and Gynaecology·Flávia Regina Peixoto PereiraMarco Aurélio Pinho de Oliveira
Aug 1, 2020·Journal of the American Society of Cytopathology : JASC·Vanda F Torous, Martha B Pitman

Related Concepts

Carcinoma, Cribriform
Squamous Cell Carcinoma
Cervix Carcinoma
Differential Diagnosis
False Positive Reactions
Retrospective Studies
Specimen Collection
Pap Smear

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