A useful technique on occasion is the use of gelatin encapsulation followed by paraffin wax processing. This enables small, fragmented tissues to be embedded together without loss, or the processing of exfoliated cells into a block for sectioning. Since gelatin is an animal protein it can be fixed with formalin and treated as a piece of tissue.
The surface area of the impregnated block will depend partly on the size of the container used for solidifying the gelatin. However, gelatin absorbs water from a tissue flotation bath and may well expand, so should be picked up on a slide quickly after being sectioned. Experience will determine how large the gelatin button should be. Gelatin blocks may become harder and a little brittle with this technique. Sectioning is best done with a sharp knife, taking sections as thin as possible.
A common technique.