, Volume 16, Issue 3, pp 219-222
Date: 18 Dec 2008

Identification of sentinel lymph node location based on body surface landmarks in early breast cancer patients

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Abstract

Background

It would be extremely useful if the location of the sentinel lymph node in breast cancer could be identified based on body surface landmarks. However, the identification of the sentinel node location by using surface landmarks in many reports is based on empirical methodologies.

Methods

We studied the distribution of the sentinel node location in 70 breast cancer patients based on the lateral line of the major pectoral muscle, the axillary skin fold that divides the trunk and the upper arm, and the nipple of the breast.

Results

The location of the sentinel node could be predicted using an ellipse with a semi-major axis of 2.8 cm and a semi-minor axis of 2.2 cm with a probability of 95% for a patient with the mean body size.

Conclusion

Our data demonstrate that the location of the sentinel nodes can be predicted within a narrow area based on body landmarks.