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Clear margins but cancer in lymph node

trv4764 Member Posts: 22

A little over a week ago, I had a lumpectomy and sentinel node biopsy. My surgeon just called me yesterday with the results. I was happy to hear that I have clear margins, but then she said there was a 2.5 mm metastatic carcinoma found in one of my 3 lymph nodes that were biopsied. How happy should I be that my margins are clear even though my lymph node is positive? She said her board will meet this week to determine if this factor will determine if I need chemo. Since recent studies have shown that a high percentage of people are unnecessarily being given chemo, she said these meetings can get pretty heated. If they decide that this node isn't cause enough for chemo, my sample will be sent for the Oncotype test.

I guess I'm wondering how to handle my mixed emotions regarding good news along with not so good news.

Can anyone relate to this/offer any advice?


  • redcanoe
    redcanoe Member Posts: 72
    edited September 2022

    this is overall pretty good news! I can't remember where I've read it but one positive node has almost the same prognosis as none. You had two clear nodes!

  • meow13
    meow13 Member Posts: 1,363
    edited September 2022

    My oncodx score was 34, my lymph nodes were clear excellent margins. I chose no chemo even though it was recommended the statistical analysis was not enough to convince me to do chemo. I am 10 years no recurrence.

    Want to say my cancer was pr negative less than 1% but er was 95% so positive. I think the pr status drove my oncodx score higher.

  • edwards750
    edwards750 Member Posts: 1,568
    edited September 2022

    I had clear margins too but when the Path report came back after my lumpectomy there was a micromet in my SN. My BS said it would get me chemo but my MO said it was her call so she ordered the Oncotype test. Thank goodness she did. My score came back at 11 with an 8% chance of a recurrence so no chemo but I did have 33 rounds of radiation which was not a big deal for me. I was 11 years out last month.

    My MO did say they had been overprescribing chemo for women for years so now they determine your treatment by the Oncotype test results.

    Good luck!