When is lymph node biopsy indicated in the diagnosis of cat scratch disease (CSD)?

Updated: Feb 16, 2021
  • Author: Robert A Schwartz, MD, MPH; Chief Editor: Michael Stuart Bronze, MD  more...
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Answer

Lymph node biopsy generally is not indicated in typical cases of CSD, given the associated morbidity and expense. Node aspiration in patients suspected of having CSD traditionally has been discouraged for fear of fistula formation. Consider performing a biopsy of an affected lymph node or skin in cases of possible malignancy or in an unclear presentation in an immunocompromised host. Ultrasonography may be performed to determine if a lymph node is fluctuant and amenable to needle aspiration.


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