Sentinel Node Mapping Using a Fluorescent Dye and Visible Light During Laparoscopic Gastrectomy for Early Gastric Cancer: Result of a Prospective Study From a Single Institute

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The aim of this study was to investigate the feasibility of sentinel node mapping using a fluorescent dye and visible light in patients with gastric cancer.


Recently, fluorescent imaging technology offers improved visibility with the possibility of better sensitivity or accuracy in sentinel node mapping.


Twenty patients with early gastric cancer, for whom laparoscopic distal gastrectomy with standard lymphadenectomy had been planned, were enrolled in this study. Before lymphadenectomy, the patients received a gastrofiberoscopic peritumoral injection of fluorescein solution. The sentinel basin was investigated via laparoscopic fluorescent imaging under blue light (wavelength of 440–490 nm) emitted from an LED curing light. The detection rate and lymph node status were analyzed in the enrolled patients. In addition, short-term clinical outcomes were also investigated.


No hypersensitivity to the dye was identified in any enrolled patients. Sentinel nodes were detected in 19 of 20 enrolled patients (95.0%), and metastatic lymph nodes were found in 2 patients. The latter lymph nodes belonged to the sentinel basin of each patient. Meanwhile, 1 patient (5.0%) experienced a postoperative complication that was unrelated to sentinel node mapping. No mortality was recorded among enrolled cases.


Sentinel node mapping with visible light fluorescence was a feasible method for visualizing sentinel nodes in patients with early gastric cancer. In addition, this method is advantageous in terms of visualizing the concrete relationship between the sentinel nodes and surrounding structures.

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