Should I have a sentinel lymph node biopsy to find out if there is spread to the lymph nodes?

See specialist. This is an important question to discuss with your dermatologist. If the melanoma is 1-4mm thick, sln biopsy is often recommended. Between 0.7-1mm depends on other features of your melanoma. Since we have yet to demonstrate survival benefits, sln biopsy is still used primarily for staging. That said, discussion with your specialist is essential as each case is different.
Yes, for breast CA. Sentinel lymph node biopsy is a critical part of breast cancer surgery, used to stage the cancer, and therefore guide further therapy. A recent study has established that many women do not require further lymph node removal even if there is cancer in the sentinel node.
Depends. This would depend on what type of caner you have and the predicted probability of that tumor spreading to a lymph node.
Likely. With any invasive breast cancer diagnosis, nodal staging is usually indicated most often via sentinel node mapping/biopsy. If there are palpable nodes or abnormal nodes on axillary ultrasound, they can be sampled via fna and if positive, sentinel node biopsy is not necessary. Slnbx is also usually done at the time of mastectomy for dcis in case invasive disease is found at final pathology.

Related Questions

My friend has breast cancer. She says she needs a sentinel lymph node biopsy. What is that?

Removing a few nodes. A sentinel node biopsy means removing several lymph nodes in the chain of armpit lymph nodes. Blue dye and/or radioactivity is injected into the breast. The first armpit lymph nodes that "light up" are removed and examined for cancer cells. We know that cancer cells travel through lymph nodes in order. If the sentinel lymph nodes are negative, the others are assumed to be negative as well.
Node staging. With invasive cancer, ax nodes are often the 1st site away from the breast. Staging used to be removing the ax fat pad w/12-15 nodes. As most pts are node neg at dx, removing the 1st node (s) in the chain (sentinel or predictive) gives the same or better staging info wi/less morbidity. These nodes are mapped by dye injection at surgery which travels to the nodes as cancer cells would potentially.
Staging procedure. This is a surgical procedure that is usually performed at the same time as the breast procedure. A radiotracer and/or blue dye is injected into the breast. These travel through the lymphatic system and stop in the first draining lymph node. A small incision is made in the armpit and the surgeon removes the lymph node that has the blue dye and the radiotracer. This node is studied for cancer.
A surgical procedure. This is a surgical procedure to identify the first node that receives drainage from the site of the cancer, and is thus the node most likely to have cancer if cancer has spread. It is done routinely for breast cancer. The node is removed and examined under the microscope for cancer. The results will help determine what additional treatments may be needed.

O had surgery for positive breast cancer. Is sentinel lymph node biopsy accurate for breast cancer surgery. Node was negative.

Yes they are. By now sentinel lymph node are the standard of care for breast cancer surgery and staging, and yes they are very accurate. Node is negative is a very good news that will make the cancer early stage and hopefully cureable.