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Review
. 2015 Mar;15(3):305-15.
doi: 10.1586/14737140.2015.990441. Epub 2014 Dec 11.

Sentinel Lymph Node Biopsy for Cutaneous Head and Neck Malignancies

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Review

Sentinel Lymph Node Biopsy for Cutaneous Head and Neck Malignancies

Sunshine Dwojak et al. Expert Rev Anticancer Ther. .

Abstract

Sentinel lymph node biopsy (SLNB) is a procedure that can provide critical information regarding pathologic lymph node status and accurate regional staging. This is very important for developing treatment plans and providing prognostic guidance for cutaneous malignancies. The head and neck (HN) region is unique from other body sites due to its complex lymphatic drainage pathways, multiple lymph node basins, proximity of important cranial nerves and potential for contralateral or bilateral drainage. These unique aspects of the HN previously created some uncertainty about the use of SLNB in the HN. This review will discuss the current reliable status of HN SLNB and provide a guide for its current application in cutaneous malignancy of the HN.

Keywords: Merkel cell carcinoma; cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma; head and neck cancer; lymph node metastasis; melanoma; sentinel lymph node biopsy.

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