Frozen section shrinkage

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In resopnse to the question by K.M.Z., regarding frozen section
shirnkage, I assume you are referring to shrinkage after the cassette is
processed.  The shrinkage you are seeing is quite normal.  Remember that
approximately 90 percent of most tissues are water, and the process of
embedding removes that water.  Of course, you do replace the water with
alcohol, and eventually paraffin, but shrinkage is part of the process.
For a detailed investigation of this process, direct your pathologist to
the classic text, John Baker's "Principles of Biological Microtechnique",
first published in 1958, and republished in 1962.  This text describes
the skrinkage seen with a variety of fixation and processing schedules,
as well as much other information that is seldom considered today.  An
excellent reference to understand some aspects of fixation, even though
many of the fixatives reported have since passed out of favor (some
because of their toxicity, such as the sublimates).
Al Floyd

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