Write short notes on the axillary lymph nodes

Introduction: there are about 35 to 50 lymph nodes contained in the fibrofatty tissue of the axilla. They are the main lymph nodes of the upper limb.
Arrangement: the axillary lymph nodes are arranged in five principal groups.
a. Pectoral group
b. Scapular group
c. Lateral group
d. Central group, and
e. The apical group
A. Pectoral group: lies along the medial wall of the axilla with the lateral thoracic artery. They receive lymph from the upper half of the trunk anteriorly and major part of the breast.
B. Scapular group: lies along the medial wall of the axilla in the posterior part. They receive lymph from the posterior part of the upper trunk and from the axillary tail of the breast.
C. Lateral group: lies along the medial side of the axillary vein. They receive lymph from the upper limb.
D. Central group: lies in the fat of the axilla and receive lymph from the groups above.
E. Apical group: lies in the apex of the axilla and receive lymph from all the above groups.
The apical group drains by the subclavian lymph trunk into the supraclavicular node lying in the posterior triangle of the neck and these drain into the thoracic ductor the right lymphatic duct.
Clinical correlates:
1. When there is infection of the upper limb the axillary lymph nodes often become tender and enlarged.
2. Cancerous cells from the axilla can metastasise to the axillary lymph nodes.

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