Fine-needle aspiration of neurilemoma (schwannoma). A clinicocytopathologic study of 116 patients

Diagnostic Cytopathology
Henryk A DomanskiAnders Rydholm


The preoperative fine-needle aspiration cytology (FNAC) diagnoses in 116 surgically excised neurilemomas were reviewed and compared with the corresponding histopathologic diagnoses made on surgical specimens and with clinical data. In addition, the utility of adjunctive techniques was analyzed and other spindle-cell lesions in the differential diagnoses were discussed. An unequivocal, benign diagnosis was rendered by FNAC in 80 cases, 67 of which were correctly labelled as neurilemoma in a review of the original cytology reports. There were 6 false-positive malignant diagnoses while 23 smears were considered insufficient and 7 inconclusive as to whether benign or malignant. On reevaluation, the diagnostic smears in most cases contained spindle cells with wavy nuclei embedded in a fibrillar, occasionally collagenous, and/or myxoid matrix and Antoni A/Antoni B tissue fragments. A moderate to abundant admixture of round to oval cells was also frequent. Nuclear palisading was seen in 41 smears with distinctive Verocay bodies in 10. Markedly pleomorphic nuclei were seen in smears from 8 ancient and 6 conventional neurilemomas, and slight to moderate nuclear pleomorphism was observed in 38 additional cases. Thus most neurilemomas hav...Continue Reading


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