Predictors of completion axillary lymph node dissection in patients with immunohistochemical metastases to the sentinel lymph node in breast cancer.
ABSTRACT Axillary lymph node dissection (ALND) in patients with immunohistochemistry (IHC)-determined metastases to the sentinel lymph node (SLN) is controversial. The goal of this study was to examine factors associated with ALND in IHC-only patients.
Retrospective review of an institutional SLN database from July 1997 to July 2003 was performed. We compared sociodemographic, pathologic, and therapeutic variables between IHC-only patients who had SLN biopsy alone and those that had ALND.
Our study group consisted of 171 patients with IHC-only metastases to the SLN. Young age, estrogen receptor negative status, high Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center nomogram score, and chemotherapy were associated with ALND. Among patients who had ALND (n = 95), 18% had a positive non-SLN. Rates of systemic therapy were similar between those with and without positive non-SLNs at ALND. No axillary recurrences were observed in this series with a median follow-up of 6.4 years. The percentage of patients who were recurrence-free after 5 years was 97% (95% confidence interval, 92.1-98.6).
On the basis of our findings and the lack of prospective randomized data, the practice of selectively limiting ALND to IHC-only patients thought to be at high risk and to patients for whom the identification of additional positive nodes may change systemic therapy recommendations seems to be a safe and reasonable approach.
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ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Sentinel lymph node biopsy (SLNB) has become standard of care as a staging procedure in patients with invasive breast cancer. A positive SLNB allows completion axillary lymph node dissection (cALND) to be performed. The axillary recurrence rate (ARR) after cALND in patients with positive SLNB is low. Recently, several studies have reported a similar low ARR when cALND is not performed. This review aims to determine the ARR when cALND is omitted in SLNB-positive patients. METHODS: A literature search was performed in the PubMed database with the search terms "breast cancer," "sentinel lymph node biopsy," "axillary" and "recurrence." Articles with data regarding follow-up of patients with SLNB-positive breast cancer were identified. To be eligible, patients should not have received cALND and ARR should be reported. RESULTS: Thirty articles were analyzed. This resulted in 7,151 patients with SLNB-positive breast cancer in whom a cALND was omitted (median follow-up of 45 months, range 1-142 months). Overall, 41 patients developed an axillary recurrence. 27 studies described 3,468 patients with micrometastases in the SLNB, of whom 10 (0.3 %) developed an axillary recurrence. ARR varied between 0 and 3.7 %. Sixteen studies described 3,268 patients with macrometastases, 24 (0.7 %) axillary recurrences were seen. ARR varied between 0 and 7.1 %. Details regarding type of surgery and adjuvant treatment were lacking in the majority of studies. CONCLUSIONS: ARR appears to be low in SLNB-positive patients even when a cALND is not performed. Withholding cALND may be safe in breast cancer selected patients such as those with isolated tumor cells or micrometastatic disease.Annals of Surgical Oncology 08/2012; · 3.94 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Regional failure rates are low in patients with a positive sentinel lymph node biopsy (SLNB) who undergo breast-conserving therapy without axillary lymph node dissection (ALND). The applicability of these findings to total mastectomy (TM) patients is not established. Our aims were to evaluate the characteristics and outcomes of SLNB-positive TM patients who did not receive axillary-specific treatment and to compare them to similar patients who underwent breast-conserving surgery (BCS). A total of 535 patients with early-stage breast cancer who underwent definitive breast surgery (210 TM, 325 BCS), had a positive SLNB and did not receive ALND between 1997 and 2009 were identified from an institutional database. Characteristics and outcomes were compared between the TM and BCS groups. Most patients had stage I to IIA, estrogen receptor-positive, progesterone receptor-positive, Her2-negative invasive ductal carcinoma, with minimal nodal disease. Compared to the BCS group, TM patients were younger, had larger tumors, had higher nomogram scores predicting additional axillary disease and were more likely to receive chemotherapy. Ninety-four percent of the BCS cohort and 5 % of the TM cohort received adjuvant radiotherapy. At a median follow-up of 57.8 months, the 4-year local, regional and distant failure rates were 1.7, 1.2 and 0.7 % in the TM group and 1.4, 1.0 and 3.7 % in the BCS group. The 4-year disease-free and overall survival rates were 94.8 and 97.8 % in the TM group and 90.1 and 92.6 % in the BCS group. Early-stage breast cancer patients with minimal sentinel node disease experience excellent outcomes without ALND, whether they undergo BCS or TM.Annals of Surgical Oncology 05/2012; 19(12):3762-70. · 3.94 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Recent results from the ACOSOG Z0011 trial question the use of intraoperative frozen section (FS) during sentinel lymph node (SLN) biopsy and the role of axillary dissection (ALND) for SLN-positive breast cancer patients. Here we present a 10-year trend analysis of SLN-FS and ALND in our practice. We reviewed our prospective SLN database over 10 years (1997-2006, 7509 SLN procedures) for time trends and variation between surgeons in the use of SLN-FS and ALND in patients with cN0 invasive breast cancer. Use of SLN-FS decreased from 100% to 62% (P < 0.0001) and varied widely by surgeon (66% to 95%). There were no statistically significant trends in the performance of ALND for patients with SLN metastases detected by FS (n = 1370, 99-99%) or routine hematoxylin and eosin (H&E) (n = 333; 69-77%), but only for those detected by serial section H&E with or without immunohistochemistry (n = 438; 73-48%; P = 0.0054) or immunohistochemistry only (n = 294; 48-28%; P < 0.0001). These trends coincided with an increase in the proportion of completion versus immediate ALND (30-40%; P = 0.0710). Over 10 years, we have observed a diminishing rate of SLN-FS and, for patients with low-volume SLN metastases, fewer ALND, trends that suggest a more nuanced approach to axillary management. If the Z0011 selection criteria had been applied to our cohort, 66% of SLN-FS (4159 of 6327) and 48% of ALND (939 of 1953) would have been avoided, sparing 13% of all patients the morbidity of ALND.Annals of Surgical Oncology 06/2011; 19(1):225-32. · 3.94 Impact Factor