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Hum Pathol. 1986 Oct;17(10):984-7.

Lymphatic and blood vessel invasion in breast carcinoma: a useful prognostic indicator?


Recent studies have presented compelling evidence to support the prognostic importance of peritumoral lymphatic and blood vessel invasion in breast cancer. This parameter appears to be particularly valuable in the hands of pathologists who are experienced in diseases of the breast and who have developed standardized criteria and expertise in their recognition. However, its application is seriously hampered by various factors, especially interobserver and intraobserver differences in interpretation. A more uniform and objective approach, such as the use of immunohistochemical techniques, may be helpful in overcoming these obstacles. This may render lymphatic and blood vessel invasion a reliably reproducible indicator that a practicing pathologist can utilize to recognize high-risk patients and recommend appropriate therapy. The extension of this approach to evaluate neoplasms of other organs--such as malignant melanomas and thyroid, uterine, and cervical carcinomas--should also be explored.

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