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Oncological surgeons face a delicate balancing act when deciding how much tissue to excise during surgery: remove too much and the patient may experience an unnecessary loss of tissue; remove too little and the patient may need additional surgery or experience a recurrence of cancer. As a prime example, about one-fourth of women who undergo lumpectomies need to have 1 or more additional surgeries to remove more cancerous tissue to ensure tumor-negative margins (Wilke LG et al. JAMA Surg. 2014;149:1296-1305).
Jacob JA. Protease-Activated Fluorescent Probe Shows Promise as a Cancer Imaging Device. JAMA. 2016;315(12):1217-1218. doi:10.1001/jama.2016.0510