Cytopathology Competency Assessment
The Cells

Author: Gordon H. Yu, M.D. (see Authors page)

Revised: 31 May 2016, last major update September 2012

Copyright: (c) 2012-2016,, Inc.

Table of Contents
Medical knowledge
Cite this page: Cytology/Competency Assessment - The Cells. website. Accessed November 18th, 2018.
Medical knowledge
  1. Recognize that ductal epithelium is normally composed of two cell populations: epithelial and myoepithelial
  2. Ductal Cells
    1. Learn the typical appearance of benign ductal epithelium in breast FNA specimens, with regards to overall fragment architecture, degree of cellular cohesion and nuclear features
  3. Myoepithelial Cells: Naked Bipolar Nuclei
    1. Become familiar with the typical appearance of myoepithelial cells in aspirate preparations and the importance of their identification when evaluating breast FNAs
  4. Foam Cells
    1. Become familiar with the typical appearance of foam cells, their proposed site of origin and diagnostic relevance
  5. Apocrine Cells
    1. Become familiar with the typical cytomorphologic appearance of apocrine metaplastic cells and their frequent association with benign breast lesions
    2. Appreciate the degree of cytologic atypia that may be seen in apocrine metaplasia in benign conditions
  6. Miscellaneous Findings
    1. Become familiar with the cytomorphologic appearance of other cell types and materials which may be encountered in breast FNA, including:
      1. Fibroadipose tissue
      2. Red blood cells
      3. Squamous cells
      4. Columnar cells
      5. Spindle cells
      6. Giant cells
      7. Microcalcifications
      8. Amyloid
      9. Collagenous spherulosis
      10. Myospherulosis
      11. Mucus