Does Tumor Size Influence the Diagnostic Accuracy of Ultrasound-Guided Fine-Needle Aspiration Cytology for Thyroid Nodules?

Do Hoon Koo, Kwang Seop Song, Hyungju Kwon, Dong Sik Bae, Ji Hoon Kim, Hye Sook Min, Kyu Eun Lee, Yeo Kyu Youn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background. Fine-needle aspiration cytology (FNAC) is diagnostic standard for thyroid nodules. However, the influence of size on FNAC accuracy remains unclear especially in too small or too large thyroid nodules. The objective of this retrospective cohort study was to investigate the effect of nodule size on FNAC accuracy. Methods. All consecutive patients who underwent thyroidectomy for nodules in 2010 were enrolled. FNAC results (according to the Bethesda system) were compared to pathological diagnosis. The nodules were categorized into groups A-E on the basis of maximal diameter on ultrasound (≤0.5, >0.5-1, >1-2, >2-4, and >4 cm, resp.). Results. There were 502 cases with 690 nodules. Overall FNAC sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, negative predictive value, and accuracy were 95.4%, 98.2%, 99.4%, 86.4%, and 96.0%, respectively. False-negative rates (FNRs) of groups A-E were 3.2%, 5.1%, 1.3%, 13.3%, and 50%, respectively. Accuracy rates of groups A-E were 96.8%, 94.8%, 99%, 94.7%, and 87.5%, respectively. Conclusion. Although accuracy rates of FNAC in thyroid nodules smaller than 0.5 cm are comparable to the other group, thyroid nodules larger than 4 cm with benign cytology carry a higher risk of malignancy, which suggest that those should be considered for intensive follow-up or repeated biopsy.

Original languageEnglish
Article number3803647
JournalInternational Journal of Endocrinology
Volume2016
DOIs
StatePublished - 2016

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