Biopsy - lymph nodes; Open lymph node biopsy; Fine needle aspiration biopsy; Sentinel lymph node biopsy
Carlson RW, Allred DC, Anderson BO, Burstein HJ, Carter WB, Edge SB, et al. Breast cancer. Clinical practice guidelines in oncology. J Natl Compr Canc Netw . 2009;7:122-192.
Clinical practice guideline for melanoma: NCCN Medical Practice Guidelines and Oncology; V.2.2010. Available online.
Skin cancer sometimes spreads to other areas of the body, often the lymph nodes. Your lymph nodes are located throughout your body and work to fight infection and filter out toxins from the bloodstream but sometimes cancer cells begin growing in the lymph nodes.
When skin cancer is diagnosed, your doctor may recommend testing to determine whether your lymph nodes are affected . This is done through a biopsy or diagnostic tools such as a CT scan. If the cancer has spread to the lymph nodes, your doctor may recommend a lymph node dissection.
During a lymph node dissection, your doctor removes the lymph nodes closest to the primary cancer site – for example, if skin cancer is detected on your arm, the lymph nodes in your armpit on the side of your body the cancer is found will be removed. Lymph nodes are not removed individually, instead an area of tissue surrounding the lymph nodes is removed. Once removed, a pathologist examines the tissue, looks for cancer cells and...
There are two major North American conferences a year where advances in clinical breast cancer research are showcased. The first is the San Antonio Breast Conference, which happens each December. The second is the American Society of Clinical Oncology, which occurs each June. Some years, breakthrough research and landmark presentations are showcased, but this years’ San Antonio conference was pretty tame. Some updates on previously discussed clinical trials , some news on the two drugs for breast cancer that will likely be approved in 2007 ( avastin and lapatanib ), but no major breakthroughs. But this one item struck me as fairly interesting…. A company called Veridex has a product called GeneSearch BLN Assay that will improve the accuracy of sentinel node biopsy. Sentinel lymph node biopsy is a technique that allows localization of the sentinel, or major draining lymph node via an intraoperative technique. Click on the link for an image of a sentinel node biopsy . If the se...
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