Lymphadenectomy

Lymphadenectomy Dissection of Lymph Node at Nyle Hospital

Alymphadenectomy, also referred as lymph node dissection,involves the surgical removal of one or group of lymph nodes, whichare latersubjected to evaluation for confirmation ofcancer.

Lymph nodes are tiny, bean-shaped organs present all over the body, especially in the armpits, groin and neck. These lymph nodes play an important role in fighting against infection as well as filtering of lymph fluid that helps in the transportation of nutrients from one cell to others. Lymph nodes usually trap any kind of bacteria or waste materials in the lymph and help in the destruction of worn out or abnormal cells (tumour cells).

A lymphadenectomy procedure is not just suggested by the physician like that of a blood test. The possibility to perform the procedure is based on the individuals age, melanomas exact location and thickness, sentinel node biopsys results and any other treatment outcomes. It is always wise to discuss the issues associated with the procedure before deciding to carry out lymphadenectomy.

Certain conditions that lead toswelling of lymph node, such asinfection or acneoccurring simultaneously with melanoma must be identified before lymphadenectomy is performed. Lymphadenectomy is not necessary, if melanoma does not affect the lymph nodes. In the area just above the affectednodes, an incision or cut is made on the skin for removal of lymph nodes andclose by lymphatic tissue along with few soft tissues and subjected for evaluation (dissection). If only a single node is removed, it is indicated as lymph node biopsy. On the other hand, if many nodes are taken out, it is indicated as lymph node clearance or dissection.

Woman diagnosed with prostate cancer are subjected to pelvic lymphadenectomy or pelvic lymph node dissection (PLND) for removing the lymph nodes and determining, if they comprise cancerous cells. It is basically performed while doing radical prostatectomy, while it may also be done separately before planning the radiation therapy.The final decision to carry out PLND against prostate cancer before proceeding radical retropubic prostatectomyis made depending on the possibility of pelvic lymph node metastases.In case of bladder cancer, PLND is carried out duringpartial cystectomy or radical cystectomy. For such women, PLND serves as a valuable tool for deriving information and tend to be therapeutic.

Surgical procedure may consume an hour. This procedure is generally carried using general anaesthesia. The recovery time and side-effects following the surgery may differ from one woman to another. Some of the risks associated with lymphadenectomy include:

  • Accumulation of fluid at the surgery spot (seroma)
  • Infection
  • Swelling of limbs due to removal oflymph nodes (Lymphedema)
  • Tingling, numbness or pain in the affected area after surgery
  • Breakdown (sloughing)of skinaround the surgery spot