Objective: Oral cancer accounts for almost 40% of all cancers in the Indian subcontinent. Techniques like oral scrape cytology are helpful in early diagnosis of premalignant lesion and thus prevention of malignant transformation. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the performance of cytotechnologists in assessing the adequacy and preliminary diagnostic accuracy of oral brush liquid-based cytology. Study Design: 110 oral brush liquid-based cytology smears were prospectively screened by a cytotechnologist for adequacy assessment, and a preliminary diagnosis was recorded. Smears were subsequently studied by the reporting cytopathologist for the final diagnosis. The performance of the cytotechnologist in the assessment of adequacy and the preliminary diagnosis were compared with the final interpretation rendered by the cytopathologist. Results: There was no significant difference in adequacy assessment between both observers, and good concordance was observed in the identification of frankly malignant lesions; however, in premalignant cases, complete agreement in all the cases was not observed. Maximum numbers of discrepant cases were seen in high-grade squamous intraepithelial lesions, 4/17 were downgraded to low-grade squamous intraepithelial lesions and 2/17 to negative for intraepithelial lesion or malignancy, respectively. Conclusion: Trained cytotechnologists are capable of assessing the adequacy and identifying the malignancy in oral brush liquid-based cytology smears, and hence there is potential for them to perform initial screening of such cases.

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