Tidwell AS, Johnson KL.
A technique for computed tomography (CT)-guided percutaneous biopsy described for use in humans was adapted to the dog and cat and is evaluated in 14 patients. Nine retrobulbar, 1 cranial mediastinal and 4 pulmonary masses and 1 hilar lymph node were biopsied in 13 dogs and 1 cat. Tissue samples sufficient for diagnosis were obtained in 12 of the 15 lesions. Diagnoses were made following cytologic (3/12) or histopathologic (3/12) evaluation or both (6/12) and included retrobulbar lymphoma, carcinoma, spindle cell sarcoma and suppurative inflammation; pulmonary carcinoma, granuloma and eosinophilic/histiocytic inflammation; nasal carcinoma, thymoma and metastatic carcinoma of a hilar lymph node. In each patient, the needle tip was identified within the lesion on the CT image. The primary limitation was non-diagnostic samples in 3 of 15 lesions due to necrosis or insufficient tissue. Complications were minor. In addition to biopsy guidance, CT imaging provided information not obtainable with fluoroscopy or ultrasonography which assisted in tumor staging and therapy planning. Although a larger number of patients and biopsy locations would be required for a thorough assessment, the free-hand technique described in this preliminary report appeared to be a safe and useful option of biopsy guidance in the dog and cat.