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Recommendations for staging and managing the axilla

Unanswered questions

The following important clinical questions cannot be answered adequately based on currently available data. Topic areas for these unanswered questions include:

  • What is the optimal use of magnetic resonance spectroscopy, MRI, PET and ultrasound in staging the axilla?
  • How should prognostic tools be used to predict further nodal involvement?
  • What is the significance of micrometastases and isolated tumour cells?
  • What is the optimal management for patients with a positive finding on sentinel node biopsy?
  • What quality of life issues are associated with management of the axilla?
  • What is the optimal use/duration of radiotherapy following axillary dissection?

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