A Comparative Study Between Fine Needle Aspiration Cytology and Core Needle Biopsy in the Diagnosis of Palpable Breast Lumps

Author(s): Sharang S Kulkarni, Sheetal Murchite, Aniket Patil


Breast carcinoma is a frequently diagnosed cancer in women worldwide. An effective diagnosis is necessary to manage this cancer in its preliminary stages. After a radiological examination of the palpable breast lumps, a core needle biopsy (CNB) or fine needle aspiration cytology (FNAC), is performed.


The study focuses on comparing the accuracy and efficacy of FNAC and CNB in diagnosing palpable breast lumps.


A randomized, open-labeled, comparative research.


A tertiary care center from October 2018 to 2020.

Patients and Method

66 female patients who presented to the out-patient department with a palpable breast lump were selected after informed consent. The randomization technique was used to divide patients into two groups, i.e., undergoing FNAC or CNB. The results thus obtained were compared with the post-operative histopathological examination statistically. Sample size 66 female patients with palpable breast lumps

Main Outcome Measures

Biostatistical parameters such as sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value (PPV), negative predictive value (NPV), and accuracy.


The sensitivity of CNB and FNAC was 92.8% and 86.6% respectively, whereas the specificity and positive predictive value of both the tests were 100%. NPV of CNB was 95%, and that of FNAC was 90%. The accuracy of CNB was 96.96% and that of FNAC was 93.90%.


Better cellularity, the possibility of immunohistochemical analysis and better characterization of specimens make core needle biopsy more efficacious than FNAC. It is more sensitive and accurate than FNAC. Core needle biopsy provides a more dependable preoperative diagnosis which can help in creating a pru

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