Lymphoscintigraphic Investigations for Axillary Web Syndromes

Mirela Mariana Roman, Romain Barbieux, Christine Eddy, Clarence Karler, Isabelle Veys, Assaf Zeltzer, Nele Adriaenssens, Olivier Leduc, Pierre Bourgeois

Onderzoeksoutput: Articlepeer review

3 Citaten (Scopus)
16 Downloads (Pure)


Background: Axillary web syndrome (AWS) is a frequent complication after surgery for breast cancer, but its lymphatic involvement is not definitively established. Here we report the results of lymphoscintigraphic investigations in patients with AWS. Methods and Findings: We conducted a retrospective, single-center review of lymphoscintigraphic investigations performed in 46 patients with AWS that was either clinically obvious or suspected. Of this group, 23 patients had two investigations with a mean interval of 19 weeks between them (range, 6-98 weeks). Results of the lymphoscintigraphic investigations, which were performed according to a well-standardized protocol, were classified into four patterns: normal; functional lymphatic insufficiency only (no lymphatic vascular morphologic abnormality); lymphovascular blockade without collateralization; and vascular collateralization and/or dermal backflow. Of the 46 patients, on the first lymphoscintigraphic investigation, four (8.6%) had a normal pattern, seven (15.2%) had functional lymphatic insufficiency only, four (8.6%) had lymphovascular blockade without collateralization, and 31 (67.3%) had vascular collateralization and/or dermal backflow. Among patients who underwent two investigations, four of the five who had only functional lymphatic insufficiency at the first investigation had developed vascular collateralization and/or dermal backflow by the second. The three patients who had lymphovascular blockade without collateralization at the first examination had also progressed to collateralization and/or dermal backflow at the second. None of the 15 patients who initially had vascular collateralization and/or dermal backflow showed any reversal at the second examination. Conclusions: Our analysis confirms the lymphatic nature of AWS and shows the lymphoscintigraphic patterns and evolutions of the lymphatic lesions with potential therapeutic implications. The retrospective review of our database is approved by the institutional ethics committee under number 2048.

Originele taal-2English
Pagina's (van-tot)417-424
Aantal pagina's8
TijdschriftLymphatic Research and Biology
Nummer van het tijdschrift4
Vroegere onlinedatum22 nov 2021
StatusPublished - aug 2022

Bibliografische nota

Publisher Copyright:
© Mirela Mariana Roman et al. 2022; Published by Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. 2022.

Copyright 2022 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.


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