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SLN biopsy question

Forums General Melanoma Community SLN biopsy question

  • Post
    gtown
    Participant

      Hey what's up? I just had a sentinel lymph node biopsy today as well as the removal of the nodular melanoma tumor on my shoulder ( surgeon said it was approx 1.9 mm, non ulcerated, with a mitotic rate of 7) My question is; he said he removed 3 or 4 lymph nodes which really concerned me, isn't just one lymph node usually removed during this process? I asked him this after the operation and he stated that they were so close ion proximity he felt better off taking the 3 out, is this something to be concerned about?

      Hey what's up? I just had a sentinel lymph node biopsy today as well as the removal of the nodular melanoma tumor on my shoulder ( surgeon said it was approx 1.9 mm, non ulcerated, with a mitotic rate of 7) My question is; he said he removed 3 or 4 lymph nodes which really concerned me, isn't just one lymph node usually removed during this process? I asked him this after the operation and he stated that they were so close ion proximity he felt better off taking the 3 out, is this something to be concerned about? The melanoma is on my shoulder and he took the three from under the armpit. Any insight would be greatly appreciated.

      P.S. He stated he saw nothing out of the ordinary while doing said procedure. No swollen or hard noides etc. 

    Viewing 11 reply threads
    • Replies
        Carol Taylor
        Participant

          Mine took two the first operation knowing melanoma was in the first. Took two to be on the safe side and mine was 1mm, so I can understand yours taking 3 or 4. As a matter of fact, he went back in a second operation and took the remaining 25…all of those were negative but I was glad he went back and took them because I don't worry too much about mel coming back and biting me later (though I know it can happen).

          He knows what he's doing and has your long term best interests at heart.

          Grace and peace,

          Carol

          Carol Taylor
          Participant

            Mine took two the first operation knowing melanoma was in the first. Took two to be on the safe side and mine was 1mm, so I can understand yours taking 3 or 4. As a matter of fact, he went back in a second operation and took the remaining 25…all of those were negative but I was glad he went back and took them because I don't worry too much about mel coming back and biting me later (though I know it can happen).

            He knows what he's doing and has your long term best interests at heart.

            Grace and peace,

            Carol

            Lauri England
            Participant

              Hello.  I had a simular experience last July when I had my SLN biopsy. I had a mole removed in June that came back melanoma.  In July I had a wider excision and SLN.  They removed 3 of them and 1 came back positive matastatic melanoma.  I then had to go back in August and they removed the rest of the lymph nodes under my arm.  2 more out of 28 were positive.  I have been on Interferon now for 7 1/2 months.  You can read my profile for more details if you want.  I wish the best of luck to you with everything.

              Lauri England
              Participant

                Hello.  I had a simular experience last July when I had my SLN biopsy. I had a mole removed in June that came back melanoma.  In July I had a wider excision and SLN.  They removed 3 of them and 1 came back positive matastatic melanoma.  I then had to go back in August and they removed the rest of the lymph nodes under my arm.  2 more out of 28 were positive.  I have been on Interferon now for 7 1/2 months.  You can read my profile for more details if you want.  I wish the best of luck to you with everything.

                nicoli
                Participant

                  Hi gtown,

                  Are you new to this site? Are you new to melanoma?  Happy to meet you, sorry you are here. This site is full of intelligent, knowledgeable people who just happen to have melanoma too. I think you will get lots of questions answered here.

                  My surgeon said he would take "one or two" nodes for my sentinel lymph node biopsy. Can't remember why he said that. He ended up taking one, which had a small tumor. In a later surgery, he took out the remaining 23 in that area. I too, think that is wise, I always ask my care providers to be as aggressive as possible.

                  Nicki, stage 3b, scalp

                  nicoli
                  Participant

                    Hi gtown,

                    Are you new to this site? Are you new to melanoma?  Happy to meet you, sorry you are here. This site is full of intelligent, knowledgeable people who just happen to have melanoma too. I think you will get lots of questions answered here.

                    My surgeon said he would take "one or two" nodes for my sentinel lymph node biopsy. Can't remember why he said that. He ended up taking one, which had a small tumor. In a later surgery, he took out the remaining 23 in that area. I too, think that is wise, I always ask my care providers to be as aggressive as possible.

                    Nicki, stage 3b, scalp

                    dian in spokane
                    Participant

                      three is a very normal number to be taken in a sentinal node biopsy. My doc took three from my underarm back in 03, all three negative for melanoma.

                      though I have since progressed without ever having lymph node involvement.

                      I've heard of docs taking anywhere from one to 5 nodes during a sentinal node biopsy, so don't let that number make you worry!

                      good luck for clear results!

                      dian in spokane

                      dian in spokane
                      Participant

                        three is a very normal number to be taken in a sentinal node biopsy. My doc took three from my underarm back in 03, all three negative for melanoma.

                        though I have since progressed without ever having lymph node involvement.

                        I've heard of docs taking anywhere from one to 5 nodes during a sentinal node biopsy, so don't let that number make you worry!

                        good luck for clear results!

                        dian in spokane

                        Carol Taylor
                        Participant

                          Hi Gtown,

                          Your letter stayed on my mind a lot over night. Not sure why, highly unlike me. But, here we are. Question: are you seeing a melanoma specialist? This dr sounds very on top of things, so I'm thinking he is.  If not, mkae sure you get one! Imperative!

                          What bothers me about your letter is you wondering why he took more than one in your case (or any case). Did he, or anyone else, sit down with you beforehand and discuss what you're dealing with and that he would, indeed, take more than one and would take as many as necessary? Did he tell you that if one comes back positive, that he's going to want to go back and get the rest?

                          I'm concerned that you might not realize what you're dealing with here. You had a pretty good sized hunk of melanoma removed from your shoulder.  There's an encellent chance that all the time that was sitting there that some melanoma cells broke loose and got in your lymphatic system…hence the procedure you describe.  If it got in even that first sentinel node and the other few are clear, he may well want to go back and get the rest because there's still that chance that a renegade cell broke loose, didn't follow a normal path and landed in another node that he wouldn't suspect.

                          IF, even one node comes back positive, please make sure you go back and have the rest removed. It may seem unnecesary now, but it could save your life. Please have that discussion with your dr.

                          If even one node comes back positive, you're stage 3…the letter will be determined by path results. If it has hit your lymphatic system, even one node, and even if all the rest are removed, you will always have that chance that there's still a renegade cell that broke loose and is waiting somewhere in your body to wreak havoc and cause hell in you.

                          I'm not trying to scare you, but I do want to make sure you have an idea of how serious this is. Melanoma's mean stuff. Do everything you can to keep ahead of it. Glad you're here, Friend.

                          Grace and peace,

                          Carol stage 3b

                          Carol Taylor
                          Participant

                            Hi Gtown,

                            Your letter stayed on my mind a lot over night. Not sure why, highly unlike me. But, here we are. Question: are you seeing a melanoma specialist? This dr sounds very on top of things, so I'm thinking he is.  If not, mkae sure you get one! Imperative!

                            What bothers me about your letter is you wondering why he took more than one in your case (or any case). Did he, or anyone else, sit down with you beforehand and discuss what you're dealing with and that he would, indeed, take more than one and would take as many as necessary? Did he tell you that if one comes back positive, that he's going to want to go back and get the rest?

                            I'm concerned that you might not realize what you're dealing with here. You had a pretty good sized hunk of melanoma removed from your shoulder.  There's an encellent chance that all the time that was sitting there that some melanoma cells broke loose and got in your lymphatic system…hence the procedure you describe.  If it got in even that first sentinel node and the other few are clear, he may well want to go back and get the rest because there's still that chance that a renegade cell broke loose, didn't follow a normal path and landed in another node that he wouldn't suspect.

                            IF, even one node comes back positive, please make sure you go back and have the rest removed. It may seem unnecesary now, but it could save your life. Please have that discussion with your dr.

                            If even one node comes back positive, you're stage 3…the letter will be determined by path results. If it has hit your lymphatic system, even one node, and even if all the rest are removed, you will always have that chance that there's still a renegade cell that broke loose and is waiting somewhere in your body to wreak havoc and cause hell in you.

                            I'm not trying to scare you, but I do want to make sure you have an idea of how serious this is. Melanoma's mean stuff. Do everything you can to keep ahead of it. Glad you're here, Friend.

                            Grace and peace,

                            Carol stage 3b

                            Ranisa
                            Participant

                              Yes it does seem to be "normal" to take out more than 1 node.  I had 3 or 4 out. 

                              Ranisa
                              Participant

                                Yes it does seem to be "normal" to take out more than 1 node.  I had 3 or 4 out. 

                                  gtown
                                  Participant

                                    Hey.

                                    Thanks to all that replied, I appreciate your help in this regard it really put me at ease. I've obviously have been worried sick about the whole situation and you're clarification helped alot. In response to Carol I'm aware of the predicament I'm in, my surgeon probably explained this to me but I prtobably missed it due to information overload. I'm going to University of Penn Hospital which has a great reputation so I'm in good hands. Thanks again everyone.

                                    Gtown

                                    gtown
                                    Participant

                                      Hey.

                                      Thanks to all that replied, I appreciate your help in this regard it really put me at ease. I've obviously have been worried sick about the whole situation and you're clarification helped alot. In response to Carol I'm aware of the predicament I'm in, my surgeon probably explained this to me but I prtobably missed it due to information overload. I'm going to University of Penn Hospital which has a great reputation so I'm in good hands. Thanks again everyone.

                                      Gtown

                                      Carol Taylor
                                      Participant

                                        Whew! Glad you're in good hands and confident! Information overload can be a bother. Be positive through this and keep your spirits up & hope alive. Worry and fear can work against you so, as hard as it is, try to be positive and have a good outlook.

                                        Praying for you!

                                        Grace and peace,

                                        Carol

                                        Carol Taylor
                                        Participant

                                          Whew! Glad you're in good hands and confident! Information overload can be a bother. Be positive through this and keep your spirits up & hope alive. Worry and fear can work against you so, as hard as it is, try to be positive and have a good outlook.

                                          Praying for you!

                                          Grace and peace,

                                          Carol

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