Regional lymph node status is the most important prognostic factor in breast cancer. Sentinel lymph node biopsy is the standard method of axillary staging in early breast cancer patients with clinically negative nodes. Preoperative lymphoscintigraphy might support refining biopsy findings by determining the number and location of sentinel lymph nodes. In aged or overweight patients, in the presence of atypical or extra-axillary lymphatic drainage, non-visualized lymph nodes, or sentinel lymph nodes close to the isotope injection site, detection could be aided by a new, hybrid imaging tool: the single-photon emission computed tomography combined with computed tomography (3D SPECT/CT). For the first time in Hungarian language, authors overview the literature: all 14 English-language articles on the implementation of 3D SPECT/CT in sentinel lymph node detection in breast cancer are included. It is concluded that 3D SPECT/CT increases the success rate and quality of preoperative sentinel node identification, and is capable of providing a more accurate staging of breast cancer patients in routine clinical practice.
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