• A series of 169 patients having biopsies of palpable lymph nodes was critically reviewed to increase the diagnostic yield. The overall yield was 70.4%. The yield in patients suspected of having neoplasms was 80.6%, in patients in whom differential diagnosis involved neoplasm and infection, 60%, and in patients suspected of having infection or disease with lymphadenopathy as a prominent part of the picture, 27.2%. High yields were found in patients with palpable cervical nodes (76.4%), female patients (74%), and patients older than 40 years (85.5%). Supraclavicular nodes produced the highest yield in any group (90%). Axillary and inguinal nodes produced yields of 62.5% and 38.5%, respectively. The size of lymph nodes was not related to yield, and only eight of 79 (10.9%) nodes produced growth on culture.
(Arch Surg 1983;118:1203-1205)