Prognostic value of regional lymph node status in canine mammary carcinomas

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In this study, we have determined the prognostic value of the presence of the micrometastases and metastases greater than 2 mm in the regional lymph nodes for bitches with mammary carcinomas. The study involved 51 dogs diagnosed with a single malignant epithelial tumour in the 4th or 5th mammary gland. All animals underwent regional mastectomy; the 4th and 5th mammary glands were removed together with the inguinal lymph node. The lymph nodes were examined immunohistochemically using the anti-cytokeratin antibody, clone AE1/AE3. The bitches were followed up every 6 months for 2 years after surgery to determine the disease-free survival (DFS) and overall survival (OS). The Kaplan–Meier analysis showed a statistically significant difference in DFS and OS only between the group of bitches without metastases and the group with lymph node metastases greater than 2 mm. No significant differences between these two groups versus bitches with lymph node micrometastases were found.

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