Original Articles

Sentinel Lymph Node Biopsy Results in Early-Stage Breast Cancer

  • Ahmet Karakuşak
  • Mustafa Şahin
  • Mustafa Anıl Yaşar
  • Nurcan Güler
  • Coşkun Görmüş
  • Serbülent Aydın
  • Ender Özer
  • Serap Pamak

Med Bull Haseki 2011;49(2):69-72


Sentinel lymph node biopsy (SLNB) in breast cancer patients targets the evaluation of the initial lymph node (SLN) which drains the primary tumor. The morbidity of unnecessary axillary dissection can be avoided by intensive preoperative assessment of SLN.


Twenty-six consecutive patients who had been surgically treated for early-stage breast cancer between March 2005 and August 2007 were evaluated. Blue dye (methylene blue) method was used to detect SLN. All patients underwent axillary lymph node dissection following SLNB. NCSS program was used for statistical analysis. Chi-square test was used in the comparison of binary groups.


Except for one, all patients were female. The mean age of the patients was 56 (29-76) years. While 13 patients underwent modified radical mastectomy (=mastectomy+axillary dissection), the remaining 13 patients underwent breast preserving surgery (lumpectomy+axillary dissection). SLN could not be found in 2 patients (7.6%).The male patient was one of these 2 patients and both of them were positive for axillary node metastases. The detection rate of SLN, specificity, negative predictive value, positive predictive value, sensitivity, false negativity, and reliability were 92.3%, 92.8%, 86%, 90.9%, 83.3%, 16.6%, and 88.4%, respectively.


Our result support the hypothesis that SLNB with blue dye alone is a reliable technique and, surgery clinics should use it prior to axillary dissection to test their own success during the learning curve.

Keywords: Breast cancer, sentinel lymph node, methylene blue

Full Text (Turkish)