Fine-needle aspiration biopsy of subcutaneous fat necrosis of the newborn

Authors

  • William P. Walker M.D.,

    1. Departments of Pathology, Pediatric Otolaryngology, and Urology, University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, Iowa City, IA
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  • Richard J. H. Smith M.D.,

    1. Departments of Pathology, Pediatric Otolaryngology, and Urology, University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, Iowa City, IA
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  • Michael B. Cohen M.D.

    Corresponding author
    1. Departments of Pathology, Pediatric Otolaryngology, and Urology, University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, Iowa City, IA
    • Department of Pathology, University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, 200 Hawkins Drive, 5216 RCP, Iowa City, IA 52242-1009
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Abstract

This report provides the first description of the fine-needle aspiration biopsy findings in a case of subcutaneous fat necrosis of the newborn. While initial interpretation of the aspirate smears was suspicious for a neoplastic process, subsequent incisional biopsy confirmed the benign nature of the lesion. Review of the cytologic material revealed rare, negatively stained, needle-shaped crystals within histiocytes and multinucleate giant cells. In the appropriate clinical setting, and given a mixture of lymphocytes, histiocytes, and multinucleate giant cells in the aspirate smears, we believe the finding of negatively stained needle-shaped crystals can strongly suggest the diagnosis of subcutaneous fat necrosis of the newborn.

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