ASCO recommends the following for the use of SNB:
- SNB can be used instead of axillary lymph node dissection for many patients with early-stage breast cancer and no clinically suspicious lymph nodes (usually meaning that the doctor cannot feel them during an examination).
- If the results of the SNB show no evidence of cancer, and an experienced surgeon has done the procedure, an axillary lymph node dissection is not needed. Experience generally means that a surgeon has performed this procedure many times with correct results.
- If the results of the SNB show evidence that the cancer has spread, then axillary lymph node dissection is recommended.