What is breast cancer sentinel node micro metastases?

Spread of cells. Micrometastasis means that a few tumor cells have left the breast tumor and traveled to the lymph nodes under the arm. In most cases, this is treated as a negative lymph node. I encourage you to review your pathology report with your surgeon and oncologists (ideally they are communicating with each other through a meeting called a tumor board).
Very tiny. It is the finding of a tiny cluster of breast cancer cells that have traveled to the axillary lymph node. It has not been found to be a worse prognosis in an otherwise early breast cancer. There would still likely be chemotherapy/radiation therapy. There is also addititonal dna testing that can help with directing your best treatment options. http://ww5.komen.org/komennewsarticle.aspx?id=193214.
Micrometastases. Are defined as breast cancer cells in the sentinel lymph node <2mm in size (but larger than 0.2mm). This is considered node positive but may not require as aggressive therapy as macrometastasea (>2mm). For example, recent studies show an axillary dissection is not necessary when the sentinel node shows micrometastases. Your doctors will consider this when recommending chemo and maybe radiation.
Difficult subject. Typically it depends on the size of the metastasis. A metastasis between 0.2 mm. And 2 mm. Is considered micrometastatic disease (stage n1mic), while a smaller metastasis is considered individual tumor cells (stage n0(i+)). Your oncologist should be able to clarify this for your specific case.

Related Questions

Has anyone had their sentinel node out for breast cancer?

Yes. Very common surgical procedure for women with early breast cancer. Procedure removes one or a few lymph glands under the arm or axilla, rather than remove all the lymph nodes. The pathologist then tests those few lymph nodes to be sure breast cancer did not spread. Read more...
Standard staging. The staging of invasive breast cancer almost always involves assessing the axillary nodes as the most likely 1st place cancer cells can be found outside he breast. Today this is dine via sentinel node mapping/bx to identify, remove, and test the first nod in the chain that will predict the status of the rest. On average just over 2nodes-procedure are removed. Read more...
I have. I have, but for melanoma. The morning of the surgery I went to nuclear medicine and they injected a radiotracer. I sat there and then they took pictures to locate the node. Then in the operating room, I was injected with blue dye and a small incision was made under my arm to locate the node. I was sore for a couple weeks but healed very well. You will also urinate blue for a day afterwards! Read more...

Is it possible to get breast cancer metastases after 15 yrs?

Unlikely but yes. Time to recurrence curves have two peaks - one at 3-5 years and a second longer tail. Er- tumors if they recur are almost all in the first peak. Er+ tumors can recur more distantly in the future. After 10 years (or sooner if er-), one must asses if it is a recurrence of the original tumor or a new second primary. Read more...
Yes. Not common, but I have seen one patient with a metastasis 25 years after surgery! Read more...

Are brain metastases common among breast cancer patients?

No. The most common sites of metastases include the bone marrow, lungs, and liver. While uncommon, breast cancer can metastasize to the brain or the lining of the brain. Read more...
Unfortunately yes. However, breast cancer patients with cancer metastatic to the brain have better survival than most other cancers spread to the brain. Aggressive treatment is usually warranted, and prolonged survival is not uncommon. Read more...

Does anastrozole tablets for breast cancer also treat bone cancer in women with metastases?

Sort Of. We define cancers by their organ of origin. Therefore, by strict definition, bone cancer originates from bone cells; Anastrozole won't help these rare cancers. More commonly, cancers can spread to bones--we call this bone metastasis. Breast cancer can spread to bones; anastrazole can prevent the spread of certain breast cancers. Hope this helps. Read more...

My aunt is recently diagnosed with secondary bone metastases from breast cancer, which sounds really bad?

Not curable but ... Any instant metastasis qualifies as stage IV disease and is no longer considered curable but is manageable. With the many options for metastatic management, time is now years instead of months especially if bone only and er+ also, palliative targeted XRT may have a role for pain control. Read more...
Treatable, incurable. I am sorry for your aunt. When the cancer has spread to other area beyond the primary organ-i.e.Breast- it is called stage iv. It is incurable, however treatable and there are many treatment options available-which will depend on the er/pr and her2neu status of the cancer.Bisphosphonates such as zometa or xgeva (denosumab) are available to decrease risk for fracture. Radiation tx is available to reduce pain. Read more...

How to extend my mom's life? Metastases liver cancer at stage 4. My mom did surgery for breast cancer before. How to extend life besides treatment?

Oncologist. You need to work with an oncologist to determine the treatment options. There is nothing you can do without treatment other than comfort and nutrition. Read more...
Treatment. I recommend you speak with your oncology team about options. You may also want to get a 2nd opinion at a university based hospital. Chemotherapy and/or hormonal therapy will be the most likely options offered to her. This depends on how much metastasis is present. Read more...
Quality. If you want, you can look for aggressive treatment for her or getting her entered in a study. It is her decision. I'd urge you to focus at this time on making her last months (or it may be years) matter. Remember the good times, seek healing if need be, stay involved with her and help her do and enjoy the things that are important to her. Add life to the time, more than time to the life. Bless you. Read more...

Breast cancer spread only to lymph nodes is also called metastasis?

Metastasis. If cancer cell are found outside of the breasst then they can be considered as metastasis. Read more...
Breast cancer. Any cancer outside the breast is technically metastasis but typically we mean spread of the cancer to other tissues such as the bone or brain. . Read more...
Metastatic disease. Any spread from the tissue of origin, including lymph nodes is metastatic disease. Read more...