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The Voice For Breast Surgery in the UK
ABS ~ Association of Breast Surgery

Sentinel Lymph Node Biopsy (SLNB) training programme

NEW START SLNB training programme officially closed on December 31st 2009. Over 80% of UK breast surgeons have completed SLN training and the use of SLNB in early breast cancer is increasing steadily every year. The 2007-8 NHSBSP audit demonstrated nearly 45% of screen detected cancers are now offered the procedure.

Future SLN training
SLN training courses will continue to be offered by Mr Mo Keshtgar and his team at the Royal Free Hospital ( but formal validation and certification has now ceased. In view of the large numbers of trained surgeons now available and the incorporation of SLNB as the standard of care for early breast cancer into most units it should be possible for any remaining untrained surgeons/trainees to obtain training in their local units by following the apprenticeship model IE 30 supervised cases of stand alone SLNB with appropriate data collection. We recommend all surgeons keep their individual data/logbooks for future scrutiny and revalidation.

Surgeons in NEW START validation phase
Please populate the following templates to Miss Fiona MacNeill. Fiona will be pleased to review your data and arrange certification.

Template of data
NEW START Audit Report
NEW START Summary data

If you have any questions or problems regarding SLN training (for example you have no locally trained surgeon/your breast unit is SLNB naive) please do not hesitate to contact Fiona MacNeill ( by email or contact Monika Bell ( at the Royal College of Surgeons Department of Education
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