Value of mucin detection in distinguishing mucoepidermoid carcinoma from Warthin's tumor on fine needle aspiration.
OBJECTIVE: To examine the validity of the presence of mucin, utilizing a semiquantitative, statistical approach, as a criterion for distinguishing low to intermediate grade mucoepidermoid carcinoma (ME) from Warthin's tumor (WT).
STUDY DESIGN: We selected histologically established fine needle aspiration (FNA) cases of ME (26) and WT (30) from a six-year period (January 1995-January 2001). Mucicarmine staining was performed on the FNA preparations. The amount of mucin detected was rated on a scale of 1-3, as follows: 1 = no mucin present, 2 = mucin present in the background and < 5% of tumor cells, and 3 = mucin present in the background and > or = 5% tumor cells. The scores for the 30 WTs and 26 MEs were tabulated and analyzed for statistical significance utilizing the Student t test.
RESULTS: The mean mucin score for the 26 MEs was 1.81, SD .63. The mean mucin score for the 30 WTs was 1.52, SD .74. There was no statistically significant difference (P = .122) in the amount of mucin present between MEs and WTs in the 56 aspirate specimens examined.
CONCLUSION: Based on the results of this study, the presence of extracellular or intracellular mucin in FNA specimens of salivary gland tumors may not be a reliable criterion for distinguishing WT from ME.
Published In/Presented At
Goonewardene SA, Nasuti JF. Value of mucin detection in distinguishing mucoepidermoid carcinoma from Warthin's tumor on fine needle aspiration. Acta Cytol. 2002 Jul-Aug;46(4):704-8.
Medicine and Health Sciences
Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine