• Soft tissue;
  • Cytology;
  • Fine-needle aspiration;
  • Spindle cell;
  • Sarcoma


Seven cases of spindle-cell proliferations in which fine-needle aspiration biopsy (FNAB) did not correlate with subsequent histology are presented. Three cases were considered low-grade sarcoma, one a dermatofibrosarcoma protuberans (DFSP), one a spindle-cell tumor with malignancy not excluded, and one a rhab-domyosarcoma vs. a fibrosarcoma. Two of the these three were histologically nodular fasciitis and one an inflammatory pseudotumor. Two cases were diagnosed cytologically as fibromatosis or nodular fasciitis (NF). One of these histologically was an intramuscular hemangioma, the other a DESP. The last two cases were diagnosed by FNAB as spindle-cell lesion, undetermined if benign or malignant, and malignant fibrous histiocytoma (MFH). Histologically both of these case were leiomyosarcoma. The cyto-logic features of each case, differential diagnosis, and potential pitfalls are discussed. In the evaluation of FNAB smears dominated by spindle cells, cellullarity, individual cells and cell patterns,and background stromal features coupled with a precise clinical history may allow a narrow differential diagnosis with a focus on whether the lesion is benign or malignant. Caution is warranted in the exact classification of spindle-cell tumors from FNAB as this may have a major impact on patient management. © 1994 Wiley-Liss, Inc.