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Year : 2020  |  Volume : 68  |  Issue : 6  |  Page : 1385--1388

Diagnostic Utility of CUSA Specimen in Histopathological Evaluation of Tumors of Central Nervous System

1 Department of Neuropathology, National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences, Bengaluru, Karnataka, India
2 Department of Neurosurgery, National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences, Bengaluru, Karnataka, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Anita Mahadevan
Professor, Department of Neuropathology, National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences, Bengaluru - 560 029, Karnataka
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0028-3886.304072

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Introduction: Cavitron Ultrasonic Surgical Aspirator (CUSA) is a technique used for the surgical treatment of tumors that aids the surgeon in highly selective tumor sampling with minimal injury to surrounding tissues. The utility of the tissue obtained from CUSA for histopathological diagnosis of central nervous system tumors is not as well-known as its surgical benefits. Even though a few studies have evaluated the diagnostic accuracy of CUSA specimen, these have dealt with very few cases. Methodology: In this study, we nil analysed 73 cases of CNS tumors (glial and non-glial) where CUSA specimen was available for histopathological examination and compared with findings on conventional samples as gold standard. Results: Most frequent types of artefacts induced by CUSA included tissue breakdown resembling necrosis, empty spaces in tissues, and crush artefacts particularly in cellular tumors, that interfered with interpretation. CUSA samples were found optimal for diagnosis of non-glial tumors (45/73), (mainly mesenchymal), wherein the diagnostic utility was comparable to the conventional samples. Difficulties were encountered in glial neoplasms, medulloblastomas and meningiomas. In glial neoplasms (28/73), accurate grading was not possible (9/28, 32%) utilising CUSA samples alone as necrosis and mitosis were not represented. Similarly in meningiomas, mitosis and brain invasion, essential for grading, was not recognizable in CUSA samples. In medulloblastomas, extensive crush artefacts interfered with diagnosis and histological subtyping making it mandatory to examine conventional tissue samples and CUSA. Immunohistochemistry results were optimal with CUSA tissue, wherever performed. Conclusion: The greatest benefits of CUSA, is its ability to sample multiple areas enhancing the yield in heterogenous tumors like gliosarcomas and its utility in tumors at surgically inaccessible sites. As a policy, we recommend that it is beneficial that all surgically excised tissues including those from the CUSA bottle and suction be sent for histopathological analysis for optimising diagnostic accuracy.


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Online since 20th March '04
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