Introduction: Having in mind the promising results of lymphoscintigraphy and intraoperative gamma probe application for the detection of sentinel lymph nodes (SLN) in malignant melanoma, breast and penis cancer, we tried to identify the SLN in prostate cancer by applying a comparable technique.
Materials and method: 350 patients with prostate cancer were examined after providing informed consent. The day before pelvic lymphadenectomy technetium-99m nanocolloid was transrectally injected into the prostate under ultrasound guidance. A single central application was done per prostate lobe in most cases. Activity attained 90- 400 MBq, and the total injected volume was about 2-3 ml. Hereafter, lymphoscintigraphy was carried out. Those lymph nodes having been identified as SLN by means of gamma probe detection and lymphoscintigraphy were removed intraoperatively. Later, most of the cases had different types of pelvic lymphadenectomy. SLN received serial sections and immunohistochemistry, non-SLN step sections.
Results: 335 patients showed at least 1 SLN in lymphoscintigraphy. 24.7% had lymph node metastases. In 2 patients, metastases in non-SLN were found without at least one SLN being affected (false-negative patient).
Conclusion: Our experience suggests that the SLN identification is not only feasible in breast cancer and malignant melanoma, but also in prostate cancer with a comparable technique.
Copyright 2003 S. Karger AG, Basel