In this VETgirl blog, we demonstrate the simple diagnostic technique of lymph nodes aspiration. This is an important diagnostic tool that can easily performed in general practice with just a 22 gauge needle directed into the enlarged lymph node. (Tip: try to avoid the direct center of the lymph node where there may be necrosis present). Some clinicians prefer to use a closed technique (with a 3-5 ml syringe attached). In this case, a dog presented with severe generalized lymphadenopathy; a preliminary diagnosis of lymphosarcoma was made based on clinical signs, physical examination findings, and in-house cytology. When aspirating, make sure to make a thin smear. Ideally, one should be stained in-house with Diff-Quick to assess for adequate sampling. When submitting slides, make sure that the slides are not submitted/shipper with a container of formalin, which can destroy the slides! Check out our VETgirl podcast on cytology sampling here for more great tips.

  1. Hello, I came across your page searching for why my dogs lymph nodes are extremely swollen after aspiration. Do you have any information on this that you could share? Thank you

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