Biopsy and sampling

If a biopsy is conducted via the endoscopic procedure, the biopsy site with as many specifics as possible needs to be reported. It is imperative that any biopsy conducted have clear potential for success and subsequent analysis. Any biopsy procedure must clearly fit within the research objectives and protocols. Recording the biopsy objectives assures other researchers that the procedure had a real purpose for the collected material in the study at hand. If the biopsy is scheduled for ancient DNA (aDNA) analysis, the extra precautions regarding sterile collection should be recorded. Radiographic location documentation is crucial to the biopsy procedure. Radiographs should be taken before and after the biopsy. Reporting the sample characteristics, such as volume and physical description along with photographic documentation, aids future researchers and enhances the potential for comparative analyses. The biopsy instrument should be described. When the biopsy results have been reported, the information should be included on the endoscopic data reporting form in order to correlate the biopsy site, biopsy method, biopsy material characteristics, endoscopic images, and radiographic findings with the biopsy results. A graphical representation or sketch of the biopsy approach should be included in the report.

When endoscopy is used for artifact retrieval from within mummified remains or any enclosed space, the same procedural reporting method as described for a biopsy should be followed. Specifically, reports regarding artifact retrieval procedures should include the following: the location of the artifact, the instrumentation used to identify and retrieve the artifact, that radiographic verification before and after retrieval was conducted, and that photographic documentation of entry point and of the retrieved object was accomplished. A graphical representation or sketch of the artifact retrieval route should be included. With this detailed documentation, the chances for reproducibility of the procedure is more probable.

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