Endoscopic thyroidectomy for solitary thyroid nodules

M. Gagne, W. B. Inabnet

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

206 Scopus citations


Conventional thyroidectomy often leaves an undesirable scar on the anterior neck. The aim of this study was to assess the feasibility and efficacy of endoscopic thyroidectomy, a new minimally invasive technique for thyroid surgery. Between September 1998 and February 2000, 18 patients with a solitary thyroid nodule underwent endoscopic thyroidectomy utilizing CO2 insufflation. There were 16 females and 2 males with a mean age of 43 years (range 17-66 years). Indications for surgery included indeterminate cytology (n = 8), follicular neoplasm (n = 8), Hürthle cell neoplasm (n = 1), and toxic thyroid nodule (n = 1). The mean nodule diameter was 2.7 cm (0.6-7 cm). Analgesic requirement, return to normal activity, and cosmetic results were compared to 18 consecutive patients who had conventional thyroidectomy. Sixteen of 18 cases were successfully completed endoscopically with a mean operating time of 220 minutes (range, 120-330 minutes). There were no major complications, but 3 patients developed mild hypercarbia and 1 patient had an incidental parathyroidectomy. When compared to conventional thyroidectomy, patients undergoing endoscopic thyroidectomy had a significantly superior cosmetic result (p < 0.005) and a quicker return to normal activity (p < 0.05), but there was no difference in analgesic requirement. Endoscopic thyroidectomy is a technically feasible and safe procedure that leads to an improved cosmetic result and a quicker recovery. Open completion thyroidectomy is recommended for thyroid carcinoma until more data are available.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)161-163
Number of pages3
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2001

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Endocrinology


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