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October 28, 1961

Papanicolaou Smears and Frozen Sections on Selected Cutaneous Neoplasms

JAMA. 1961;178(4):380-385. doi:10.1001/jama.1961.03040430016004

This study indicates that accurate diagnosis can be made by both cytologic study of Papanicolaou stained smears and frozen tissue sections prepared from specimens of cutaneous premalignant, malignant, and benign lesions. Both techniques are of distinct advantage over the paraffin-block method in making a rapid presumptive diagnosis because of the short time required and the high degree of specificity. In some instances, rapid diagnosis permits more prompt institution of therapy and reduction of the period of hospitalization. Disadvantages are the need for trained personnel and the difficulty of specifically diagnosing premalignant lesions. The smear technique has certain advantages over frozen section method in that it is equally reliable, requires only limited equipment, and is simple and highly adaptable.