Endoscopic thyroid surgery is a minimally invasive surgery that allows the thyroid to be accessed through a small incision in the neck. During the surgery, one or both lobes of the thyroid gland may be removed.
What is it?
This procedure is a minimally invasive method of removing the thyroid gland partially or entirely. A scope is inserted through a small incision and used for guidance during the surgery. Such a treatment option may be necessary for thyroid abnormalities, masses, and other conditions requiring removal of the gland.
What should I do to prepare?
If the patient will receive an endoscopic thyroid surgery, it is important that he or she follows the doctor’s direction for eating and drinking before the surgery. Depending on the thyroid condition, he or she may be prescribed medications to take beforehand in preparation for the surgery.
What happens during the process?
The neck will be draped and prepared, and a small incision of approximately 1 inch or less will be made parallel to the relaxed skin tension lines of the neck. A small video camera is inserted with surgical instruments through the incision. Structures such as muscles of the neck will be shifted out of the way as the surgeon advances towards the gland. This adjustment allows for minimal tissue destruction as the gland is finally approached and cut for removal.
What are the risks and potential complications?
This procedure involves risks as with any surgical treatment. Specifically, there is the possibility of bleeding or hematoma, wound infection, recurrent laryngeal nerve injury, external branch of the superior laryngeal nerve injury, and hypocalcemia.
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