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Article
August 1956

THE REGIONAL LYMPHATICS IN THE SURGICAL TREATMENT OF CANCER

AMA Arch Surg. 1956;73(2):367-368. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1956.01280020181033
Abstract

THE CONCEPT of treatment of cancer by radical resection with inclusion of the regional lymphatics stems from the thesis that carcinoma begins as a local disease and extends progressively into neighboring and distant areas chiefly by way of the lymphatics. Much of the credit for proving the soundness of this method of therapy goes to Halsted and Willy Meyer for their work in the field of mammary cancer and to Miles for his contributions in the field of cancer of the rectum. The mass of evidence which has accumulated since their pioneer work has so completely established the validity of this principle of therapy that its soundness is no longer open to question.

Less well appreciated is the importance of an intimate knowledge of the details of the anatomy of the lymphatics as a prerequisite for the proper performance of radical cancer surgery. Without this background of preparation, the surgeon

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