[Skip to Content]
[Skip to Content Landing]
May 31, 1976

Needle Biopsy-Reply

Author Affiliations

Boca Raton, Fla

JAMA. 1976;235(22):2391. doi:10.1001/jama.1976.03260480013016

This article is only available in the PDF format. Download the PDF to view the article, as well as its associated figures and tables.


In Reply.—  In response to Dr Rush's comments on my article, I did not intend to condemn the use of needle biopsy as a valid diagnostic tool. I support Dr Crile's aspiration of thyroid nodules and, since my residency days at Memorial Hospital, have been an advocate of aspiration of breast masses. In these instances and others, I find it a very useful procedure.I seriously question the value of needle biopsy in accurately diagnosing parotid swellings. It is not just the needle dissemination which Dr Rush mentions that alarms me. I am more concerned with the remote possibility of obtaining an accurate histologic identification. My second cause for concern is the inherent danger of injury to the facial nerve in such a blind maneuver as a needle biopsy. We do not encounter this hazard in needle biopsy of other areas, for example, liver, lung, or breast.I am unfamiliar