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Korean J Cytopathol. 1990 Dec;1(2):175-178. Korean. Case Report.
Park SY , Lee KG .
Department of Pathology, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Korea.

A case of metastatic adenoid cystic carcinoma of the lung, originated from the trachea, was diagnosed by fine needle aspiration. Although the cytologic features of adenoid cystic carcinoma have been well described, it is easy to confuse adenoid cystic carcinoma with more common primary small cell neoplasms of the lung, i.e., small cell carcinoma, well differentiated adenocarcinoma, and carcinoid tumor of the lung. The features distinguishing adenoid cystic carcinoma from these neoplasms include 1) tight, globular, honeycomb pattern of cells, 2) acellular basement membrane material in the lumen, and 3) cells lacking true nuclear molding and having bland chromatin pattern. The morphologic feature of metastatic adenoid cystic carcinoma in this case was so distinctive as to permit a definite diagnosis by aspiration cytology.

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