Purpose: The purpose of this study is to evaluate the role of diagnostic fine-needle aspiration biopsy (FNAB) of head and neck masses and to calculate the sensitivity and specificity of this method. Materials and Methods: The records of 219 patients who had undergone an FNAB of head or neck masses were reviewed. FNAB results were correlated with the histopathologic findings observed after surgery in 96 of 219 patients. Sensitivity, specificity and positive predictive value of FNAB for the detection of malignancy were calculated. Results: Four false-negative, 4 false-positive and 22 unsatisfactory results were obtained using FNAB, according to histopathologic findings. The overall sensitivity, specificity, accuracy and positive predictive value for malignancy were 87.5, 93.8, 91 and 87.5%, respectively. Conclusions: FNAB is a useful diagnostic tool for head and neck masses. However, FNAB results by themselves could be insufficient in the management of head and neck masses; therefore, they should be combined with clinical and radiologic findings.

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