How it works?
Senza categoria

Preoperative Diagnosis of Warthin Tumor

et al. Paolo Fois

Journal of Personalized Medicine


Background: Warthin tumors account for about 20% of all benign salivary tumors, approaching 50% if we consider only the parotid gland. Wait and see is considered a reasonable option, but the diagnosis should be certain.

Diagnosis can be based on morphological and cytological data, but the sensitivity of the fine needle aspiration cytology (FNAC) is not absolute, with a high rate of non-diagnostic findings in the event of a Warthin tumor, hindering the counseling and therapeutic decisions. The aim of the study is to evaluate the reliability of FNAC and its combination with anamnestic, clinical, and ultrasonographic data in diagnosing Warthin tumors.

Methods: A total of 413 patients affected by masses within the major salivary gland and managed between 2017 and 2022 at our institution have been included in the present retrospective study. Each patient underwent fine needle aspiration biopsy (FNAB) with a subsequent cytological diagnosis; successively, for each patient, the clinician (otolaryngologist) and the histopathologist discussed the combination of cytological (even non-diagnostic), clinical, and ultrasonographic data in order to make a “multiparametric” diagnosis.

A total of 214 cases were subsequently submitted to surgical resection and had a final histopathology report, to which the cytological and the multiparametric diagnoses can be compared. We extracted all the patients with a cytological, multiparametric, and/or histological diagnosis of Warthin tumors in order to assess the sensitivity and specificity of FNAC and of multiparametric analysis in diagnosing Warthin tumors in case of a major salivary gland mass.

Results: One hundred thirty-two cases had a cytological, multiparametric, and/or histological diagnosis of Warthin tumors. FNAC displays a sensitivity of 68.4% and a specificity of 98.7% in diagnosing Warthin tumors. The multiparametric evaluation allowed a considerable improvement in sensitivity (92.9% vs. 68.4%), minimizing the number of non-diagnostic results and preserving at the same time a similar value of specificity (95.5% vs. 98.7%). Notably, none of the patients with a cytological or multiparametric diagnosis of Warthin were affected by a malignant lesion in the final histopathological report.

Conclusions: In the case of Warthin tumors, a multiparametric evaluation encompassing anamnestic, clinical, and cytological data is effective in reducing the number of non-diagnostic reports and can safely guide the management of a tumor (e.g., antibiotic treatment of infectious complications, assign a low priority to surgery, even consider observation avoiding surgery) which is absolutely benign and can be associated with no clinically relevant issues.


Diapath Lab Talks | Privacy Policy