Sentinel Node Biopsy (SNB) is a high-tech nuclear medicine procedure used in cases of breast and skin cancer to pinpoint the first lymph node (the sentinel node) to which cancer would travel.
If the sentinel node tests negative for cancer, you can be more than 97% sure that the cancer has not spread. With SNB, the patient loses only a handful of lymph nodes versus 15 to 20 with traditional procedures. This dramatically reduces the risk of developing infections and lymphedema, an abnormal swelling of the arm. SNB also results in a smaller scar.