Article: article from journal or magazin.
Sentinel lymph node biopsy in nonmelanoma skin cancer patients.
Journal of Skin Cancer
Publication types: Journal ArticlePublication Status: ppublish
The management of lymph nodes in nonmelanoma skin cancer patients is currently still debated. Merkel cell carcinoma (MCC), squamous cell carcinoma (SCC), pigmented epithelioid melanocytoma (PEM), and other rare skin neoplasms have a well-known risk to spread to regional lymph nodes. The use of sentinel lymph node biopsy (SLNB) could be a promising procedure to assess this risk in clinically N0 patients. Metastatic SNs have been observed in 4.5-28% SCC (according to risk factors), in 9-42% MCC, and in 14-57% PEM. We observed overall 30.8% positive SNs in 13 consecutive patients operated for high-risk nonmelanoma skin cancer between 2002 and 2011 in our institution. These high rates support recommendation to implement SLNB for nonmelanoma skin cancer especially for SCC patients. Completion lymph node dissection following positive SNs is also a matter of discussion especially in PEM. It must be remembered that a definitive survival benefit of SLNB in melanoma patients has not been proven yet. However, because of its low morbidity when compared to empiric elective lymph node dissection or radiation therapy of lymphatic basins, SLNB has allowed sparing a lot of morbidity and could therefore be used in nonmelanoma skin cancer patients, even though a significant impact on survival has not been demonstrated.
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