Document Type : Original Research
Department of Pathology, PES Institute of Medical Sciences and Research, Kuppam, Chittoor, Andhra Pradesh, India
Background & Objective: Invasive breast carcinoma (IBC) is the most commonly diagnosed cancer among women in India. The conventional visual method of evaluation of Tumor-Stroma Ratio (TSR) and Stromal Tumor-Infiltrating Lymphocytes (sTIL) appears to be subjective. The present study aims to evaluate the utility of the indigenously designed square grid method for the evaluation of tumor-stroma ratio and stromal tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes in invasive breast carcinoma by assessing the inter-observer variability.
Methods: This was a retrospective study conducted at a rural tertiary care referral institute from July 2018 to June 2020. In each case, microphotographs were taken from 10 representative fields in H&E-stained sections for evaluating TSR in low-power and sTIL in high-power. Both the parameters were evaluated employing an indigenously designed square grid applied onto microphotographs in the power-point slides by making use of principles of the Pythagorean theorem. Both parameters were separately evaluated by two pathologists. Cohen kappa statistics was the statistical tool used to analyze inter-observer variability.
Results: Thirty cases were analyzed. Invasive breast carcinoma of no special type (IBC-NST) was the most common histopathological type (26 cases (86.67%)). For TRS evaluation, a Kappa value of 0.78 suggested substantial agreement with an agreement of 91.67%. For sTIL evaluation, a Kappa value of 0.51 suggested moderate agreement with an agreement of 88.33%. The P-values were statistically highly significant (P<0.001).
Conclusion: Square grid method is a novel technique for evaluating TSR and sTIL in invasive breast carcinoma. It can be considered an example of the application of Pythagoras’ theorem in Pathology.
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