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The page below is a sample from the LabCE course Histology Special Stains: Connective Tissue. Access the complete course and earn ASCLS P.A.C.E.-approved continuing education credits by subscribing online.

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Gordon and Sweet's Silver Stain - Diagnostic Applications

Reticular fibers support body organs like the liver, spleen, and kidneys. These fibers are not apparent in routinely stained tissue sections. The Gordon and Sweet's silver staining method is used to demonstrate reticular fiber patterns. Abnormal patterns may indicate cirrhosis or necrosis of the liver. This is why retic stains are often requested on liver biopsies. Abnormal reticular fiber patterns may also indicate the presence of certain tumors. As an example, in most carcinomas, reticular fibers surround nests of tumor cells.