Tiny samples atraumatically obtained are at the heart of both the elegance and the dif? Following initial successes of traditional exfoliative cytology, further applications were long constrained by the fact that few body surfaces present themselves for direct collection of exfo- ated cells.
Thus, it was inevitable that advances in nonoperative evaluations for speci? Hence the proliferation of sampling methods with techniques the same as their names, including brushing, washing, lavage, and aspiration. Examples come readily to mind.
One of the most dramatic bursts in cytodiagnosis happened in the s, when deep-lung sampling by bronchoalveolar lavage BAL arrived at about the same time as the AIDS pandemic. Frequent and often repeated diagnosis of CMV and pneumocystis quickly led to numerous such samples being submitted to many laboratories. These now common infectious agents and this new technique were highly suited to rapid evaluation of AIDS patients.
The rapid rise of? Although not really new, the explosion in its use had awaited both cli- cal acceptance and adequate training for a critical mass of pathologists. This history has been well recorded by others.