biliary brushingA cytology technique of waning popularity for diagnosing cancer of the biliary, in which a brush is introduced endoscopically and the cells obtained are assessed by light microscopy.
While biliary brushing has a high specificity (up to 100%), its specificity can also be as low as 30%; the false-negativity is due to sampling error, size and location of lesion, fibrosis, technical errors, interpretive difficulties related to specimen inadequacy, admixed benign elements, necrosis, lack of familiarity with dysplastic lesions, well-differentiated carcinoma and rare tumours. Liquid-based cytology is increasingly preferred.
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