[Endoscopic ultrasonography-guided fine-needle aspiration (EUS-FNA) as primary diagnostic tool for unclear lesions in the upper gastrointestinal tract]

M Moehler, J Voigt, M Kastor, M Heil, C Sengespeick, S Biesterfeld, W Dippold, S Kanzler, P R Galle
Deutsche Medizinische Wochenschrift 2011, 136 (7): 303-8

BACKGROUND: Endoscopic Ultrasound (EUS) and the EUS guided fine-needle Aspiration (EUS-FNA) increasingly plays an important role in the diagnostic evaluation of lesions or lymph nodes in the mediastinum and upper gastrointestinal tract of unknown origin. The objective of this study was to assess safety and accuracy of EUS-FNA in two secondary and tertiary health care providers.

METHODS: Prospectively, from Mai 2003 to June 2007, all patients underwent EUS with devices from Pentax (FG38UX, EC3830UT) with EUS-FNA (Cook or Mediglobe) at Johannes Gutenberg University and Catholic Hospital in Mainz. In all cases, cytology and extracted cells were histological examined by the same pathologists. In case of negative EUS results, patients were observed for at least 12 months after initial diagnosis later by reanalysis, CT-scan and follow-up clinical data to confirm the diagnosis.

RESULTS: In total, 776 patients with EUS and 167 EUS-FNA (21.5 %) could be evaluated. Median age was 62 years, 68 % of patients were male. Patients underwent EUS-FNA in the mediastinum (n = 54), pancreas (73), stomach (13), liver, adrenal glands and rectum (n = 6). The complication rate of EUS-FNA was very low with only 0.6 %, mainly consistent of one minor haemorrhage at the aspiration site. A clear histological diagnosis could not be achieved in 12.5 % (21/167). Statistical analyses of all EUS-FNA revealed a sensitivity of 77.8 % (95 %CI 67,2 - 86,3) and a specificity of 98.5 % (95 % CI 92,2 - 100), with a positive and negative predictive value of 98.4 % and of 78.1 %, respectively. The overall accuracy was 87 % (95 %CI 80,4 - 92,0).

CONCLUSION: EUS combined with FNA is a safe tool for first histological evaluation of unidentified lesions or lymph nodes in the mediastinum and upper gastrointestinal tract, indicative for gastrointestinal cancers.

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