Journal of Korean Society of Medical Ultrasound 1998;17(3): 255-259.
Metastatic Axillary Lymph Nodes in Breast Cancer: Ultrasonographic Findings.
Jae Woon Kim, Dae Hyoun Cho, Jin Woo Kim, Jong O Choi, Mi Soo Hwang, Jae Kyo Lee
Department of Diagnostic Radiology, School of Medicine, Yeungnam University, Taegu, Korea.
  Published online: January 1, 2001.
ABSTRACT
PURPOSE: To evaluate the ultrasonographic findings of metastatic axillary lymph nodes in patients with breast cancer. MATERIALS & METHODS: We retrospectively reviewed ultrasonographic features of 54 pateints who had surgically confirmed breast cancers and with metastatic axillary lymph nodes. The tumor size ranged from 0.7 to 7cm with a mean of 2.86cm. Tumor stage, T1 was 12 cases(22%), T2, 36 cases(66%), and T3, 6 cases(11%), and pathologic diagnoses of all cases were invasive ductal carcinoma. We assessed the size of the lymph nodes, the maintanance of ordinary nodal architectural pattern, change in cortex of lymph nodes and the hilar fat echogenecity. We also examined all relationship between the shape and the stage of breast cancers and those botween the shape and the size of the metastatic lymph nodes. RESULTS: The size of the lymph nodes ranged from 0.5 to 3.3cm, with a mean of 1.61cm. All cases showed loss of ordinary nodal architectural pattern. A round feature was found in 24 cases(44%), focal cortical bulging in 14 cases (25%), diffuse cortical hypertrophy in 12 cases(22%), and partial obliteration of the hilar fat echogenecity in 4 cases(7%). No relationship between the shape and the stage of breast cancers wae found, but difference of the shape according to the size of the metastatic lymph nodes(p < 0.05). CONCLUSION: When US is performed in patients with suspected breast malignancy, loss of ordinary nodal architectural pattern, such as round feature, diffuse or focal cortical thickening, and partial obliteration of hilar fat echogenecity, suggested metastatic lymph nodes. There is difference of the shape according to the size of the lymph nodes with metastatic lesions in breast cancer.
Keywords: Breast neoplasas, US; Breast neoplasms, metastases; Lymphatic system, neoplasms
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