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FNA cytology of irradiated breast tissue can be a diagnostic challenge. Histological changes include epithelial atypia in the terminal duct-lobular units and in larger ducts. Therefore, having knowledge of prior irradiation therapy is crucial to avoid a false-positive diagnosis of malignancy.
FNA smears show atypical cells with nuclear and cytoplasmic enlargement and degenerative features, including smudged nuclear chromatin and frayed cytoplasmic borders.