To use all functions of this page, please activate cookies in your browser.
With an accout for my.bionity.com you can always see everything at a glance – and you can configure your own website and individual newsletter.
- My watch list
- My saved searches
- My saved topics
- My newsletter
Frozen section procedure
The frozen section procedure is a pathological laboratory procedure to perform rapid microscopic analysis of a specimen. It is used most often in oncological surgery. The technical name for this procedure is cryosection.
The intraoperative consultation is the name given to the whole intervention by the pathologist, which includes not only frozen section but also gross evaluation of the specimen, examination of cytology preparations taken on the specimen (e.g. touch imprints), and aliquoting of the specimen for special studies (e.g. molecular pathology techniques, flow cytometry). The report given by the pathologist is usually limited to a "benign" or "malignant" diagnosis, traditionally shouted into an intercom.
Additional recommended knowledge
The key instrument for cryosection is the cryostat, which is essentially a microtome inside a freezer. The surgical specimen is placed on a metal chuck and frozen rapidly to about −20 °C. At this temperature, most tissues become rock-hard. Subsequently it is cut frozen with the microtome portion of the cryostat, the section is picked up on a glass slide and stained (usually with hematoxylin and eosin, the H&E stain). The preparation of the sample is much more rapid than with traditional histology technique (around 10 minutes vs 16 hours). However, the technical quality of the sections is much lower.
The principal use of the frozen section procedure is the examination of tissue while surgery is taking place. This may be for various reasons:
The frozen section procedure as practiced today in medical laboratories is based on the description by Dr Louis B. Wilson in 1905. Wilson developed the technique from earlier reports at the request of Dr William Mayo, surgeon and one of the founders of the Mayo Clinic. Earlier reports by Dr Thomas Cullen in at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore also involved frozen section, but only after formalin fixation, and pathologist Dr William Welch, also at Hopkins, experimented with Cullen's procedure but without clinical consequences. Hence, Wilson is generally credited with truly pioneering the procedure (Gal & Cagle, 2005).
|This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Frozen_section_procedure". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.|