MUHAS and UCSF Faculty Lead Second Fine Needle Aspiration Biopsy Workshop in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania

In January 2019, faculty from the UCSF and Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences (MUHAS) Departments of Pathology and Radiology collaboratively organized and led an ultrasound-guided fine-needle aspiration biopsy (FNAB) short course at MUHAS. This workshop was the second FNAB short course facilitated by UCSF at MUHAS, and it was designed for pathologists, radiologists, and residents in Tanzania to improve their technical skills in ultrasound-guided FNAB . The course consisted of case-based presentations and hands-on practice, focusing on sampling technique and basic ultrasounds skills. Course attendees included many individuals who had taken part in the previous course, held in Fall 2017, as well as many new attendees.

As part of this workshop, an educational study assessing the efficacy of regularly held FNAB workshops is underway and will collect data over several years. The results of the first FNAB workshop at MUHAS were described in the Journal of Global Oncology. This article describes the importance of FNAB training in low-resource settings, stating, “Fine-needle aspiration biopsy (FNAB) is a minimally invasive, cost-effective diagnostic tool that can be used in low-resource settings. However, adequacy and accuracy of FNAB is highly dependent on the skills of the operator and requires specialized training.” While skill mastery is not the goal of these FNAB short courses, the workshops provide opportunities for FNAB technique development and skill transfer. You can read more about the results of the first workshop here.

Dr. Asteria Kimambo, a senior resident, as well as Drs. Marie Claire Ndayisaba, and Advera Ngaiza, recent graduates of the MUHAS pathology residency program, served as assistant instructors and provided key training support during the course. Drs. Kimambo, Ndayisaba, and Ngaiza have received extensive FNAB training from UCSF faculty over the past two years, with Drs. Kimambo and Ndayisaba each participating in one-month cytopathology observerships at UCSF.

From the UCSF Department of Pathology, course leaders included Drs. Dianna Ng and Ron Balassanian, with course support provided by pathology fellow, Dr. Rachael Fels Elliott, and undergraduate student Celine Opdycke. From the UCSF Department of Radiology, course leaders included Drs. Amie Lee and Tatiana Kelil. From MUHAS, course directors included Dr. Edda Vuhahula from the Department of Pathology and Dr. Lulu Sakafu from the Department of Radiology.