Prognostic value of sentinel lymph node biopsy in 121 low-risk melanomas (tumour thickness <1.00 mm) on the basis of a long-term follow-up.
ABSTRACT Sentinel lymph node biopsy (SLNB) is a widely accepted procedure to accurately stage melanomas with a thickness ≥1 mm. The value of SLNB in thin melanomas is still controversial, especially because long-term observations of these patients are rare. The purpose of the current study was to identify the positive sentinel lymph node (SLN) ratio in low-risk patients with cutaneous melanoma (CM) of thickness less than 1 mm and its possible prognostic value, focusing on long-term follow-up data.
In a retrospective single-centre study performed at the Department of Dermatology and Allergy, University of Bonn, 121 patients who had received SLNB were identified out of 621 patients with a diagnosis of CM of <1.00 mm thickness presenting between September 2000 and February 2009 (mean follow-up time, 50.9 months).
Of the 121 patients, 5 (4.1%) had a positive SLN. All positive SLNs were found in patients with a tumour thickness between 0.90 mm and 1.00 mm. There were no significant differences in the presence of positive SLNs according to Clark level and ulceration status (Clark levels II and III and no ulceration vs. Clark levels IV and V or ulceration), regression, gender or age. Disease-free survival was 100% in the SLN-positive patients. On the other hand, five SLN-negative patients (4.1%) developed disease progression. One of these five progressive patients showed recurrence in the former negative SLN basin (16.7% false-negative rate).
A positive SLN in thin melanomas is uncommon with a prevalence of 4.1% in our study population. We could not identify reliable clinicopathological risk factors which could predict results of SLNB in thin melanomas. Based on our results, SLNB may be considered in patients with a melanoma of thickness in the range 0.90-0.99 mm, because all SLN-positive patients belonged to this subgroup.
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ABSTRACT: To compare the effect of pathologic sentinel lymph node (SLN) status with that of other known prognostic factors on recurrence and survival in patients with stage I or II cutaneous melanoma. We reviewed the records of 612 patients with primary cutaneous melanoma who underwent lymphatic mapping and SLN biopsy between January 1991 and May 1995 to determine the effects of tumor thickness, ulceration, Clark level, location, sex, and SLN pathologic status on disease-free and disease-specific survival. In the 580 patients in whom lymphatic mapping and SLN biopsy were successful, the SLN was positive by conventional histology in 85 patients (15%) but negative in 495 patients (85%). SLN status was the most significant prognostic factor with respect to disease-free and disease-specific survival by univariate and multiple covariate analyses. Although tumor thickness and ulceration influenced survival in SLN-negative patients, they provided no additional prognostic information in SLN-positive patients. Lymphatic mapping and SLN biopsy is highly accurate in staging nodal basins at risk for regional metastases in primary melanoma patients and identifies those who may benefit from earlier lymphadenectomy. Furthermore, pathologic status of the SLN in these patients with clinically negative nodes is the most important prognostic factor for recurrence. The information from SLN biopsy is particularly helpful in establishing stratification criteria for future adjuvant trials.Journal of Clinical Oncology 04/1999; 17(3):976-83. · 18.04 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Lymphatic mapping and sentinel lymph node biopsy can upstage patients with intermediate thickness (1.0 to 4.0 mm) melanoma. Currently, there are no strict guidelines for sentinel lymph node biopsy in patients with melanoma <1.0 mm thick. A retrospective review of our patient database (598 patients treated at two institutions in Baltimore, MD, between January 1970 and June 2002) was performed to identify patients with primary cutaneous melanoma <1.0 mm thick who developed recurrent disease. This cohort of patients with > or =5 years of followup from the date of diagnosis was compared with patients with primary melanoma of similar thickness and similar followup intervals without recurrent disease. A total of 114 patients with primary cutaneous melanoma <1.0 mm thick were identified, 17 of whom developed disease recurrence. In 13 patients, the site of first recurrence was the regional lymph nodes and in 4 patients disease recurred with distant metastases. The median time to lymph node recurrence was 55 months (range 2 to 112) months. Patients with regional lymph node recurrences had a significant (p = 0.02) difference in median primary tumor thickness of 0.80 mm versus 0.45 mm in patients without recurrent disease; there was no association of Clark level of invasion to recurrence (p = 0.42). In all, 35% of patients (7 of 20) presenting with melanoma 0.80 to 0.99 mm thick developed lymph node recurrence a median of 41 months (range 8 to 112 months) after surgical treatment. Sentinel lymph node biopsy can be justified for patients with melanoma > or =0.8 mm thick provided that the technique would detect metastatic disease years before it becomes clinically evident.Journal of the American College of Surgeons 09/2003; 197(3):403-7. · 4.50 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Background: TNM classifications are the basis for diagnostic and therapeutic procedures in oncology. Histopathological reports have to enable a proper indexing of tumor specific findings into recent classifications. Methods: A systematic review of the literature was performed to identify reports dealing with the assessment of mitotic rate and the processing and evaluation of sentinel node biopsies in malignant melanoma. On the basis of this review an expert panel of dermatopathologists and general pathologists discussed and agreed recommendations for general practice. Results: Following recommendations were agreed with a broad consensus (93-100 % agreement): The determination of the mitotic rate in primary melanoma is performed on HE slides. The evaluation of an area of 1 mm(2) is sufficient. Only dermal mitoses are considered. The counted number of mitoses is provided as an integer value. The mitotic rate shall be determined in primary melanomas of ≤1.00 mm vertical tumor thickness according to the hot-spot method and provided as an integer value in relation to an area of 1 mm(2) . The determination of the mitotic rate in the case of thicker primary melanomas is desirable. In general, for the evaluation of each sentinel lymph node, 4 slides should be prepared. For diagnostic purposes, immunohistochemistry (preferably with antibodies against S100ß, Melan A and HMB-45) should be performed in addition to HE staining. The pathology report should provide information about micro-metastases and their longest extension (one-tenth of a millimeter). Conclusions: These recommendations are suitable for standardizing the histopathological diagnosis of malignant melanoma and for providing a common basis for clinical decisions and scientific research.Journal der Deutschen Dermatologischen Gesellschaft 06/2011; 9(9):690-9. · 1.40 Impact Factor