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Ultrasonically guided percutaneous fine-needle aspiration biopsies were carried out on 153 patients with focal liver and pancreatic lesions, and were subsequently evaluated cytologically. A correct diagnosis of malignancy was made in 66 of 74 patients with proven hepatic malignancy, and in 38 of 41 patients with proven pancreatic malignancy, showing an overall accuracy of 92% and 94%, respectively. The specificity of the procedure was 100%. Ultrasonically guided fine-needle aspiration biopsy followed by cytological examination appears indispensable in diagnosis and differentiation between benign and malignant hepatic and pancreatic focal lesions.