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December 16, 1998

Temporal Artery Biopsy to Diagnose Temporal Arteritis—Reply

Author Affiliations

Margaret A.WinkerMDIndividualAuthorPhil B.FontanarosaMD, Senior EditorsIndividualAuthor

JAMA. 1998;280(23):1992. doi:10-1001/pubs.JAMA-ISSN-0098-7484-280-23-jbk1216

In Reply.—As most articles that correlated temporal artery biopsy length with sensitivity studied fixed tissue at gross examination, we agree with Dr Caroe that our recommended length of artery before fixation should be increased slightly. However, even more important than those few extra millimeters is the division of the artery into several segments at gross. This way the entire length of the artery can be examined microscopically. At the University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics, approximately 20 glass slides containing 3 to 4 sections are examined, each containing 6 to 8 segments of artery at different levels, making it easier to detect "skip" lesions. Thus, it's not just the length, but how you slice it.

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