Ultrasound-guided fine needle aspiration cytology prior to sentinel lymph node biopsy in melanoma patients
Sentinel Lymph Node Biopsy
Combined US and FNAC provides important information prior to SLNB in that both procedures identify metastases in the lymph nodes (sensitivity > 80%). Patients with positive FNAC may proceed directly to complete lymph node dissection (cLND) instead of having initial SLNB. Thus, combined US and FNAC may prevent unnecessary anesthesia and surgical management as well reduce costs. In our study 16% (19/121) fewer SLNB procedures were carried out, subsequently replaced by cLND. For patients with a negative combination of in vivo US and FNAC, SLNB remains the best diagnostic option.