Psammoma Bodies in Fine Needle Aspiration Cytology of the Breast: A Clinicopathological Study of 30 Cases

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Psammoma bodies (PBs) in breast lesions are rare and little is known about the role of these structures in breast pathology. This study has looked in to the diagnostic significance of PBs in fine needle aspiration (FNAC) of breast lesions. Over a 5-year period, FNACs of the breast were done in 4,563 subjects, of which 1,678 were diagnosed to be malignant. On review of all breast aspirates including non-neoplastic lesions, 30 cases showed PBs to be associated with breast carcinoma (BC). Cytological features were correlated with clinical, radiological, histological, and immunohistochemical findings. All 30 aspirates and their corresponding histological sections showed varying number of PBs and nonpsammomatous bodies (NPBs). For comparison, 31 cases of age-matched BC without PBs and NPBs in both aspirates and sections were studied. Statistical analysis using Chi-square test was done to compare BC with and without PBs. BC with PBs was characterized by papillary pattern of malignant cells, mucin in the background, infiltration by macrophages, cellular degeneration, overexpression of estrogen receptor (ER), and progesterone receptor (PR) and moderate positivity (2+) for Her2/neu. Calcium deposition has long been implicated in the pathogenesis of many degenerative diseases; hence the formation of PBs may be relevant in breast oncology. The presence of PBs in FNAC of clinically suspected breast lesions which are cytologically negative for malignancy warrants further histological confirmation.

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