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The feasibility of quantitative parameters of lymphoscintigraphy without significant dermal backflow for the evaluation of lymphedema in post-operative patients with breast cancer

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ARTICLE DOWNLOAD

The feasibility of quantitative parameters of lymphoscintigraphy without significant dermal backflow for the evaluation of lymphedema in post-operative patients with breast cancer

10$

Keunyoung Kim, In-Joo Kim, Kyoungjune Pak, Seong-Jang Kim, Su Jung Choi, Heeseung Park, Taewoo Kang, In Joo Kong, Yong Beom Shin, Hyojeong Kim & Jin A Yoon 

Abstract

Purpose

We aimed to evaluate the potential role of quantitative methods associated with lymphoscintigraphy for the assessment of severity of lymphedema post-operatively in patients with breast cancer who did not show definite dermal backflow activity on the lymphoscintigraphy.

Methods

We evaluated 47 lymphoscintigraphies without dermal backflow in patients with lymphedema who received a mastectomy and axillary dissection or sentinel lymph node dissection for invasive ductal carcinoma of the breast. The quantitative asymmetry indices (QAIs) of both arms were calculated for each axilla, upper arm, forearm, and the whole arm. The QAI was defined as the radiopharmaceutical uptake ratio of the affected side to the unaffected side. Arm circumference was measured at four locations per arm to identify the maximal circumference difference (MCD) between affected and unaffected sides.

Results

The total and forearm QAIs of each side arm were significantly higher in the group with above moderate stage lymphedema compared with the mild stage group. Previous radiotherapy also had a significant effect on radiotracer retention expressed as QAI. The MCD was significantly correlated with QAI values of the forearm and the whole arm. The QAI of axillary areas was not significantly correlated with circumferential measurements of the arm.

Conclusions

The QAIs have significant value for the diagnosis and severity of lymphedema and may therefore potentially be used as an objective tool for the assessment of lymphedema.

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Year 2020
Language English
Format PDF
DOI 10.1007/s00259-019-04576-1