Re: Breast specimens

From:Melissa Jensen

Ah.The old stew meat vs. lean cuisine!..When we get spec.that are the ones you have..we run them back thru the processor on clean cycle..than return to formalin..and put back on processor  with the normal run.I realize it delays results a day..But hey..They cant read what they submitted could try 70% alcohol ..let the fatty tissue sit in it until processing. You will just have to let the new residents know..if you do big ect..that's fine..but you wont have results for a couple days.Good Luck!
----- Original Message -----
From: Connie P.
To: Histonet
Sent: Monday, April 22, 2002 6:16 PM
Subject: Breast specimens

Could we please revisit my current nemesis, which is surely going to drive me into leaving Histology forever and seeking a lucrative highly paying successful career?
I need help/advice/suggestions regarding handling breast specimens so that they are well preserved, easy to cut on the microtome, instead of partially raw tissue which requires the cut and scoop method to obtain a slide.
I plead with the residents (1st yrs.) to trim them so that they fit in the cassette without touching the sides, and cut them to 2mm in thickness. Of course, most times they are 4mm or more. They are then placed into cassettes and held overnight in 10%NBF. They get put on the processor the next evening. I tried alcoholic formalin, saw no difference. Large breast lymph nodes are just as bad if not worse, raw in the centers. The small ones are usually fixed O.K. Does anyone have a tried and true method for handling large breast specimens which works for them with few exceptions? If so, please share it, I will be forever in your debt.
Connie L. Probert
Detroit, Michigan

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