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Evaluating the Role of Sentinel Lymph Node Biopsy in Minimally Invasive Cancer Surgery

Ziang Chen

Minimally invasive surgery has revolutionized the field of surgical oncology by offering patients the benefits of reduced morbidity and shorter recovery times. The introduction of sentinel lymph node biopsy (SLNB) in the context of minimally invasive cancer surgery has further refined the diagnostic and therapeutic approaches for various malignancies. This study aims to critically evaluate the role of SLNB in the realm of minimally invasive cancer surgery, shedding light on its significance, challenges, and outcomes. The use of minimally invasive techniques, such as laparoscopy and robotic-assisted surgery, has gained widespread acceptance in the treatment of various cancers, including breast, melanoma, and gynecological malignancies. These approaches offer patients the advantage of smaller incisions, decreased postoperative pain, and quicker return to normal activities. However, ensuring accurate staging and lymph node assessment remains crucial for optimal cancer management. SLNB has emerged as a pivotal tool in this context. By identifying the sentinel lymph node the first node in the lymphatic basin draining the tumor surgeons can make informed decisions regarding the extent of lymph node dissection and adjuvant therapies. This not only minimizes unnecessary lymph node dissection but also reduces the risk of associated complications, such as lymphedema.