PMID: 3971307Mar 15, 1985Paper

Surgery for thyroid carcinoma

H F StarnesJ R Brooks


The cases of thyroid carcinoma treated at this hospital during the period 1948 to 1981 were reviewed retrospectively. Nine hundred eighty-six patients with thyroid nodules were operated on. One hundred fifty-two were thyroid carcinoma (59 papillary, 36 mixed papillary-follicular, 30 follicular, 20 anaplastic, 5 medullary, and 2 Hurthle cell tumors). There was a 92% follow-up for a mean of 10 years. In the last decade, patients presented at a younger age, the female predominance was diminished, and 15% had had previous neck irradiation. Surgery consisted of total (27) or subtotal thyroidectomy (89), lobectomy or nodulectomy (24), and biopsy (12). Total thyroidectomy had an incidence of postoperative complications that was 20 times higher than that with partial thyroidectomy (P less than 0.001). Disease-related death, recurrence, and survivor status were discussed. There was no significant difference between total versus subtotal thyroidectomy. This study reaffirms the usefulness of subtotal resection and the avoidance of morbidity of more radical total thyroidectomy surgery.


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