The dimensions of these lymph nodes are consistent with those found in the literature, where the maximum diameter reported is 1-2 cm . However, in contrast to other studies, we report a relatively high percentage of lymph nodes (9.86%) with a maximum diameter that exceeds 2 cm. These findings could indicate that lymph nodes that are large yet mainly fatty may be difficult to evaluate, especially using low frequency probes. This is because only the peripheral hypoechoic cortex
has an adequate US contrast with the surrounding this website subcutaneous fatty tissue, and if this cortex is very thin, then detecting the lymph node can be very difficult. By contrast, lymph nodes that are smaller yet with a less fatty hilus would be theoretically easier to detect. The mean thickness of the cortex in our study is consistent with the results of other studies [5, 9, 13] and basically consistent with anatomical data. However, based on the above hypothesis, it is possible that
a thinner cortex would render the identification of such lymph nodes difficult, which would affect the percentage of lymph nodes with these characteristics. A frequently observed anomaly (11.29% of the lymph nodes) was the extroflexion of the lymph node, which can be easily explained by AZD8931 chemical structure physiological phenomena. In particular, the lymphatic vessels are afferent to the peripheral cortex, and the lymph, following filtration, exits from the hilus vessels. Thus it can be reasonably concluded that any response to “irritants”, whether inflammatory or neoplastic, would induce lymphocyte proliferation, which would be initially local, only later extending to within the lymph node. The irregularity of the outline, due to a local thickening of the cortex, appears to be related to an initial mild or moderate reaction to the irritating-inflammatory stimulus; it could also be the manifestation of a local outcome of past similar
phenomenon. Bay 11-7085 We hypothesize that this alteration – frequently observed in non-neoplastic conditions – is reactive and non-specific; we can thus conclude that a higher number of extroflexions are unrelated to metastases, in that the malignant cells reach the lymph node from only a single or very few afferent lymphatic vessels, especially if the neoplasm is small. This hypothesis contradicts the findings of an selleck kinase inhibitor another study, conducted at the axillary level, in which mono-lobulated and multi lobulated contours led to an increased relative risk of metastases (Odds Ratios of 2.1 and 3.8, respectively) . Nonetheless, it is possible that in the previous studies [10, 14] the focal thickening of the cortex was much greater than that in our study.