Small lymph nodes of the abdomen, pelvis, and retroperitoneum: usefulness of sonographically guided biopsy.
PURPOSE: To evaluate the usefulness of sonographically guided percutaneous biopsy of small lymph nodes in the abdomen, retroperitoneum, and pelvis. MATERIALS AND METHODS: From May 1995 through January 1997, 35 sonographically guided lymph node biopsies were performed in 34 patients. All biopsies were performed with a 20- (n = 18) or 22-gauge (n = 10) self-aspirating needle alone or in combination (n = 7). To determine the amount of compression achieved with the transducer, the skin-to-lesion distance on reference computed tomographic (CT) scans was compared with that on sonograms. A biopsy was considered successful if a specific benign or malignant diagnosis was rendered by the pathologist. RESULTS: Of 35 sonographically guided biopsies, 30 (86%) were successful. Diagnoses included 26 (74%) cases of carcinoma, three (9%) cases of benign reactive lymphocytosis confirmed at open biopsy, and one (3%) case of a lymph node with a positive acid-fast bacilli stain. The average lymph node diameter was 2.1 cm (range, 0.9-4.3 cm). With sonography, a mean of 2.5 needle passes (range, 1-5) were made per biopsy. Transducer compression reduced the skin-to-lesion distance from an average of 8.8 cm (at CT) to 4.5 cm. CONCLUSION: Sonographic guidance seems to provide a reasonable alternative to CT in biopsy of small abdominal, pelvic and retroperitoneal lymph nodes.
Fisher, AJ; Paulson, EK; Sheafor, DH; Simmons, CM; Nelson, RC
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