Let Us Talk About Sentinel Lymph Node Removal

Facts –

  • About 1 in 8 U.S. women (about 13%) will develop invasive breast cancer over the course of her lifetime. (Source)
  • For women in the U.S., breast cancer death rates are higher than those for any other cancer, besides lung cancer. (Source)
  • Almost 1 in 16 women in Singapore will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime. (Gleneagles)
  • Breast cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in women today in Singapore.

These facts are highly frightening! Continue reading to learn important facts and information. If you have been diagnosed with breast cancer, it is essential to stay alert otherwise it may spread all across the region. Doctors/ surgeons often start their diagnosis with basic stages and check lymph nodes under the arm first. “More than 80% of breast lumps are not cancer.”

They may contain cancer cells, which may spread to other parts of the body. Modern imaging tests are highly essential for such critical tests. Did you know? Effective treatment is available for breast cancer, if it is detected early.

Symptoms of Breast Cancer –
  • Painless lump
  • Persistent itching and rash around the nipple
  • Swelling over the breast
  • Redness or darkening of the skin
  • Bleeding or unusual discharge from the nipple
Never ignore –
  • Severely enlarged pores on the breast
  • Redness and swelling

Sentinel Lymph Node Biopsy and Removal

The sentinel lymph node is the first lymph node that receives lymphatic drainage from breast. In certain cases, your surgeon will remove a few of these nodes (They cut the skin over the area and remove the node(s) and send it for testing. This is performed under general anesthesia. The surgeon may recommend a full ALND in order to check more nodes for cancer.

The bottom line

“You should have annual breast exams at the doctor’s office starting at 18 and have annual mammograms starting at 40.” – The Johns Hopkins University

Hence, if you think that you are having problem, pain, itching, redness or any other thing in your breasts, you should immediately contact a breast specialist. Make sure they focus on initial consultation, screening, surgery and physiotherapy and wound management. Apart from that, make sure to maintain your weight, quit smoking and one of the most important things – exercise regularly…

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