Lymph node mapping in patients with bladder cancer undergoing radical cystectomy and lymph node dissection to the level of the inferior mesenteric artery

Authors

  • Jørgen B. Jensen,

    1. Department of Urology, Aarhus University Hospital, Skejby, and Institute of Pathology, Aarhus University Hospital, Aarhus Sygehus NBG, Denmark
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  • Benedicte P. Ulhøi,

    1. Department of Urology, Aarhus University Hospital, Skejby, and Institute of Pathology, Aarhus University Hospital, Aarhus Sygehus NBG, Denmark
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  • Klaus M.-E. Jensen

    1. Department of Urology, Aarhus University Hospital, Skejby, and Institute of Pathology, Aarhus University Hospital, Aarhus Sygehus NBG, Denmark
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Jørgen Bjerggaard Jensen, Department of Urology, Aarhus University Hospital, Skejby, Denmark. e-mail: jb@skejby.net

Abstract

Study Type – Therapy (case series)
Level of Evidence 4

OBJECTIVE

To evaluate extended lymph node dissection (LND) as a nodal staging tool in the treatment of invasive carcinoma of the urinary bladder and to suggest a reasonable proximal limit of the dissection.

PATIENTS AND METHODS

In all, 170 patients underwent radical cystectomy with extended LND up to the level of the inferior mesenteric artery. Specimens were evaluated as 13 separate packages from pre-designated anatomical locations. The number of LNs and presence of positive LNs (LN+) at each location was prospectively registered.

RESULTS

The median (range) number of LNs removed was 24 (6–62). In all, 25.3% of the patients had LN+. The median (range) number of LN+ was 2 (1–20). Advanced T-stage was correlated with a higher risk of LN+ but not to the specific location of the LN+. Two patients had LN+ above the common iliac bifurcation with no LN+ more distally located within the pelvic region. All other patients with LN+ above the common iliac bifurcation had more distally located LN+. There were no skip lesions to LNs above the aortic bifurcation.

CONCLUSIONS

Extended LND above the common iliac bifurcation including the presacral area provides a more accurate LN staging compared with a standard pelvic LND. Extending the limits above the aortic bifurcation is not necessary from a staging perspective.

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