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Year : 2018  |  Volume : 5  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 74-79

Comparing Frozen and Paraffin Section in the Detection of Metastases in Sentinel Lymph Node in Breast Cancer in Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital, Kano, North-Western, Nigeria

1 Department of Surgery, Bayero University Kano, Kano, Nigeria
2 Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital Kano, Kano, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Abubakar B Muhammad
Department of Surgery, Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital, Kano
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ssajm.ssajm_14_18

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Background: Sentinel lymph node biopsy is an effective diagnostic procedure to determine the need to treat the axilla or otherwise in patients with early breast cancer to avoid its inherent complication and further morbidity. Frozen section is one of the acceptable methods of scrutinizing sentinel lymph nodes to enable decision be made intraoperatively. This study is aimed to determine the sensitivity of frozen section biopsy in the diagnosis of positive sentinel lymph nodes in patients with early breast cancer. Materials and Methods: The study was conducted in the Surgery and Pathology Departments of Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital, Kano, from September 2015 to March 2017. Consecutive patients diagnosed with early breast cancer, who met the inclusion criteria, were recruited into the study after obtaining informed consent. Early breast cancer in this study was defined as stage I (T1, N0, M0) or stage IIA (T2, N0, M0). Additional information included age, sex, menopausal status, surgical procedures, duration of surgery, and the histopathological types. Statistical and comparative analysis was made. Result: A total of 117 patients with breast cancer were seen at the General Surgery Outpatient Department during the study period. Out of these patients, 40 met the inclusion criteria and were recruited for the study. The age range of 28 to 70 years and mean age of 47.4 ± 11.6 years were recorded. Twenty-two (55%) patients were premenopausal. Eighty-two sentinel lymph nodes were harvested and analyzed. Twenty-eight (34.1%) sentinel nodes were found to be positive by frozen section, whereas 54 (65.9%) were negative. The paraffin section analysis showed that 44 (53.7%) out of 82 sentinel nodes were positive for malignancy, whereas 38 (46.3%) were negative. The sensitivity, specificity, and accuracy of frozen section were 70.8%, 100%, and 82.5%, respectively. The false-negative rate was 29.2% (P = 0.292, confidence interval = 90%). Conclusion: Frozen section biopsy of sentinel lymph node is not as effective as routine staining technique in detecting malignant cells in patients with early breast cancer.

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