Sentinel Node Option?

Sentinel Node Option?

Sentinel Node Option? Hi All

Having now become the world expert on the dreaded BC I am wondering why I went through the mutilation of a complete axilla clearance and not the sentinel node option??

They thought from my scan that the nodes were clear and they indeed were. I only had a small lump so I am wondering why they did not do the sentinel node thing to avoid the traumas of a complete clearance? Had op Dec 2005.

I was lucky enough to be able to go private due to my work policy and was supposed to have one of the best surgeons so it is really niggling me.

Anyone know any answers??

Love to all


sentinel node biopsy Unfortunately not all surgeons can offer sentinel node biopsies as they are not all trained in the technique yet.

Hi Alise I have posted a similar thing to this somewhere else on the site but can’t find it, so will just say that I had 15 lymph nodes out and was butchered, not one was cancerous so I also wondered why I had to go through so much pain at the time.

But on querying it, my surgeon (I live in SA) said it was his belief (although he might not be right) that it could still get through the nodes at a later time, even though the sentinel nodes have been removed. My oncologist, also had the same views and as I put myself 100% with my onc I let him take them all out, along with the mastectomy…so it took a long time for me to come as right as I am going to be. But now I look back I am glad they were all taken out, I am 3 and a half years past the breast cancer - although I did go down with brain cancer last year, but that was something different.

I hope this has helped you a little bit. Roz x


I helped the surgeon with the training programme for sentinel node - complete with radioactive dye etc (my breast still is blue after 4 months!) All I can say is I dearly hope this helps people in the future as my cancer hadn’t spread to the nodes (nor would it be likely too with the type I had & the size it was - 7 mm). WLE all clear + nodes clear.

I agree the pain, numbness, weakness etc of 15 nodes out is hell and getting to me now. They won’t do sentinel node without surgeons being trained.

I read article in last week’s Daily Mail about a woman who was lucky enough to have had sentinel node and was impressed. It was nice to read the surgeons view on op too. I think mine came too early!!


always of interest to me sentinel nodes as i had it but was very confused by it all and am still very dubious.

when i had it i was having a lumpectomy and the surgeon said if the tumour is less than 2cm they offer a SNB, they thought mine was 1.5 by 1.7 so did th SNB, it was clear in the 4 nodes they took and sampled. However the lump had no clear margins and required a mastectomy. i had lobular cancer and the lump they say was 4.4cm huge but apparently its often splattered in lobular.
She wouldn’t take anymore nodes and i had no radiotherapy but chemo.

will always wonder about it i suppose i am glad to have no fear of lymphodeoma which my mum had, but if it came back i will be always wondering what if i had had nodes removed completely.

This ‘cancer stuff’ is a mine field and we can only go along with the advice of our surgeons and oncologists and leave the rest to Him upstairs if we believe there is anyone there.