Axillary Lymph Node Dissection

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Axillary Lymph Node Dissection

The lymph nodes in the armpit are called axillary lymph nodes. An axillary lymph node dissection (ALND) is surgery to remove lymph nodes from the armpit (underarm or axilla). An ALND is also called axillary dissection, axillary node dissection or axillary lymphadenectomy. This surgery reduces the chance that the cancer could come back. It also helps to plan further cancer treatment.

Who gets Axillary Lymph Node Dissection?

If the cancer is found to have spread to the sentinel lymph nodes or other nodes in the axillary area, then the breast surgeon may recommend an axillary lymph node dissection. If only one or two sentinel lymph nodes contain evidence of cancer, then an axillary lymph node dissection may not be necessary.
If the patient is undergoing a modified radical mastectomy, the lymph node dissection usually occurs in the same operation. If the patient is undergoing a lumpectomy, the lymph node dissection may occur at the same time or in a later operation.

What to expect before Axillary Lymph Node Dissection?

Dr. Monika will explain you about the entire procedure of this surgery along with the risks, benefits and other options. The patient needs to inform the doctor regarding all the medicines that are on. Dr. Monika might advice the patient to stop taking some medicines that may interfere with the surgery. The patients are instructed exactly about when to stop eating and drinking.

What happens during Axillary Lymph Node Dissection?

The operation is performed under general anaesthesia. The surgery usually takes 1-2 hours to complete. Most surgeons make a 2–3-inch incision in the skin crease under your arm. Once the nodes are removed, it will be sent to a pathologist for examination. The patient may have a drain in their underarm.

What to expect after Axillary Lymph Node Dissection?

The patient might feel weakness immediately after surgery and shoulder area might feel sore and stiff for a few days. A physiotherapist will teach the patient some arm exercises. There are chances of tingling, numbness, stiffness, weakness, or lymphoedema (swelling of the arm) in the affected arm. The scars fade over time. The patient can go back to normal life in 4- 6 weeks. An axillary node dissection may be done at the same time as other breast cancer surgeries. If this is the case, your recovery time may vary.
Dr. Monika will give more specific instructions to the patient and family about recovering from the surgery like diet, wound care, follow-up care, and driving, etc.

Book Appointments at an Area Near You

Dr. Monika Pansari conducts consultation at below locations

BGS Gleneagles Global Hospitals

67, Uttarahalli Main Rd, Sunkalpalya, 
Bengaluru, Karnataka 560060

Acura Speciality Hospital

No. 105, 5th Block, 17th C Main Road, KHB Colony , Koramangala, Bengaluru, Karnataka 560095

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Dr Monika is awesome!! Not only is she an excellent surgeon but most importantly to us as patient and caregiver, she has been warm, empathetic, and very supportive. She has always made time to answer our questions and been encouraging throughout my wife's cancer journey. We are very grateful to her.
Ajay Nangalia
My mom was suffering with endometric carcinoma. Dr Monica guided us with a right treatment and operated my moms surgery successfully. She was available to answer our queries after the surgey as well. She was sweet and helped us curing the disease. Really happy with the service.
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This website is built with intention of providing basic details about the various diseases. The contents of the website is not meant to replace an in-person consultation. Please follow the advise of your doctor via in-person consultation. This website will not assume any legal responsibility for the patient’s medical condition.
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