Purpose: Thyroglobulin measurement in fine-needle aspiration washout fluid (FNA-Tg) is widely used for detection of lymph node metastasis (LNM) in patients with papillary thyroid cancer (PTC). Recent studies suggested that serum anti-thyroglobulin antibodies (TgAbs) could interfere with FNA-Tg. We evaluated whether TgAbs can affect FNA-Tg when diagnosing LNM in postoperative patients with PTC. Methods: From November 2006 to June 2011, a total of 239 LNs from 201 patients who underwent bilateral thyroidectomy and radioactive iodine ablation therapy were included. The interactions between FNA-Tgs and serum TgAbs, and diagnostic performances between FNA with additional FNA-Tg and FNA alone according to the presence of serum TgAbs were evaluated using the generalized linear mixed model and the bootstrap method. Results: From 106 (44.4%) malignant and 133 (55.6%) benign LNs, there were 32 (13.4%) LNs with detectable serum TgAb levels and 207 (86.6%) LNs with undetectable serum TgAb levels. In logistic regression analysis, a significant negative interaction was observed between FNA-Tgs and serum TgAbs (p = 0.031). In the absence of serum TgAbs, the diagnostic performances were superior in the FNA with FNA-Tg than in the FNA only. However, in the presence of serum TgAbs, the diagnostic performances of the FNA with FNA-Tg were not significantly different from the FNA only, even with a different cutoff value of FNA-Tg. Conclusions: Serum TgAbs may interfere with FNA-Tg studies and caution is advised while analyzing FNA-Tg for detection of LNM in patients with PTC.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)