Turkish Archives of Otorhinolaryngology
Original Article

Role of Fine-Needle Aspiration Biopsy in the Management of Salivary Gland Masses


Clinic of Otorhinolaryngology, İzmir Bozyaka Training and Research Hospital, İzmir, Turkey


Clinic of Otorhinolaryngology, İstanbul Training and Research Hospital, İstanbul, Turkey

Turk Arch Otorhinolaryngol 2016; 54: 105-111
DOI: 10.5152/tao.2016.1700
Read: 326 Downloads: 132 Published: 03 September 2019


Objective: Fine-needle aspiration biopsy (FNAB) is widely used in the management of salivary gland masses. Its main advantage is its ability to differentiate benign from malignant disease. In this study, we aimed to evaluate the diagnostic ability of FNAB in salivary gland masses.


Methods: The records of patients who had undergone FNAB before parotidectomy or submandibular gland excision between 2005 and 2013 were retrospectively analyzed. FNAB results were classified as negative, positive, suspicious for malignancy, and non-diagnostic. Preoperative FNAB results were compared with definitive histopathological results. The sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value (PPV), negative predictive value (NPV), and accuracy of FNAB results were calculated.


Results: A total of 285 patients were enrolled. Among them, 230 (80.7%) had parotid gland and 55 (19.3%) had submandibular gland masses. Following a definitive histopathological examination, the most common benign tumor was pleomorphic adenoma (52.6%), whereas malignant tumors were mucoepidermoid carcinoma (2%) and squamous cell carcinoma (2%). The sensitivity, specificity, PPV, NPV and accuracy of FNAB results were 76.9%, 95.4%, 75%, 95.9%, and 92.6%, respectively. The rate of a suspicious cytology was 5.2% (15 patients) and that of a non-diagnostic cytology was 8.8% (25 patients).


Conclusion: FNAB is a safe and simple diagnostic tool for the diagnosis of salivary gland masses and has a relatively high sensitivity and specificity. It may provide valuable information for patient counselling and surgical planning. The major drawbacks include a lower sensitivity than specificity and a relatively high rate of non-diagnostic results.

ISSN2667-7466 EISSN 2667-7474