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Dr. King on Role of Sentinel Lymph Node Biopsy in Breast Cancer

Tari King, MD, FACS, chief of Breast Surgery, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Brigham Women’s Cancer Center, discusses the role of sentinel lymph node biopsy in breast cancer.

Tari King, MD, FACS, chief of Breast Surgery, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Brigham Women’s Cancer Center, discusses the role of sentinel lymph node biopsy in breast cancer.

Sentinel lymph node biopsy remains an important procedure used in patients with breast cancer, says King, as axillary staging is still needed. There needs to be some assessment if there is cancer in the lymph node, as it can guide treatment, King explains. Steps are being taken to phase out the procedure in some patients.

In the next 10 years, King says that efforts will increase in order to identify which patients do not need to undergo a sentinel lymph node biopsy. There are currently 2 ongoing trials comparing sentinel lymph node biopsy to axillary observation in women who had a normal ultrasound.

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