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Arch Hellen Med, 31(1), January-February 2014, 55-59


Lymphedema after maxillary surgery: Factors affecting its development

E. Kouskos, K. Kapaktsi, M. Kouskou, S. Komaitis, G. Sanidas
Second Department of Surgery, "Vostaneio" General Hospital of Mytilini, Mytilini, Lesvos, Greece

OBJECTIVE Lymphedema is the most important complication of axillary lymph node dissection (ALND), which is an important component of the surgical treatment of breast cancer. In this retrospective study, the relevant data of the surgical department of a regional hospital are presented and the factors affecting the incidence of lymphedema are explored.

METHOD During the period 2003−2012, 145 patients underwent ALND in this department. In a review of all cases, 128 patients were found and examined for lymphedema.

RESULTS Of a total of 128 patients who had been subjected to ALND, only 5 had developed lymphedema (3.9%).

CONCLUSIONS These results are among the best reported. In all 5 cases large numbers of axillary lymph nodes were excised, and there was extensive nodal involvement and subsequent postoperative radiotherapy, and all 5 patients had increased body mass index (BMI), all of which are factors strongly related with the development of lymphedema.

Key words: Breast cancer, Infection, Lymphedema, Radiotherapy, Sentinel lymph node biopsy.

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