Purpose: The goal of this study was to validate the ultrasonography (US) and cytopathological features that are used in the diagnosis of the follicular variant of papillary thyroid carcinoma (FVPTC) and to characterize the role of BRAFV600E mutation analysis in the diagnosis of FVPTC. Methods: From May 2012 to February 2014, 40 thyroid nodules from 40 patients (mean age, 56.2 years; range, 26 to 81 years) diagnosed with FVPTC were included in this study. The US features of the nodules were analyzed and the nodules were classified as probably benign or suspicious for malignancy. Twenty-three thyroid nodules (57.5%) underwent BRAFV600E mutation analysis. Clinical information and histopathologic results were obtained by reviewing the medical records of the patients. Results: Thirty nodules (75.0%) were classified as suspicious for malignancy, while 10 (25.0%) were classified as probably benign. Seven of the eight nodules (87.5%) with atypia of undetermined significance/follicular lesion of undetermined significance (AUS/FLUS) cytology showed suspicious US features, while one of the two nodules (50.0%) with follicular neoplasm cytology presented suspicious US features. Five of the 23 nodules (21.7%) that underwent BRAFV600E mutation analysis had positive results, all of which were diagnosed as suspicious for malignancy or malignant based on cytology. None of the nodules with benign, AUS/FLUS, or follicular neoplasm cytology were positive for the BRAFV600E mutation. Conclusion: US features allow nodules to be classified as suspicious for malignancy, and the presence of suspicious US features in nodules with ambiguous cytology may aid in the diagnosis of FVPTC. BRAFV600E mutation analysis is of limited value in the diagnosis of FVPTC.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging