Surgery to remove the thyroid gland is called Thyroidectomy. Endoscopic Thyroidectomy is a newer, less invasive surgery than the standard “open” Thyroidectomy. The “open” technique involves a large neck incision 6-8 inches or longer, placement of a drain in the incision, and usually a 3-4 day hospital stay.
With the minimally invasive endoscopic approach, the surgery is performed through a smaller incision and most patients are able to go home the same day of surgery.
Benefits of Minimally invasive surgery versus Traditional (Open) Surgery:
Minimal soft tissue trauma
Faster healing time
Lower infection rate
Less blood loss
Usually performed as outpatient day surgery
Endoscopic Thyroidectomy surgery is performed under sterile conditions in a hospital operating room with the patient under general anesthesia. The surgery may be performed by an Otolaryngologist, a head and neck surgeon, or an Endocrine surgeon.
You will be placed on your back with your neck hyperextended.
Your surgeon makes a small incision at the front of the neck.
The muscles and connective tissue are divided in order to access the thyroid gland and retractors are placed to maintain the operative space.
Your surgeon inserts the tiny endoscope through the incision.
Next, the blood supply to the area that is to be removed is clamped off or a special Harmonic scalpel is used which cauterizes as it cuts.
Both lobes of the Thyroid gland are then removed if a complete Thyroidectomy is being performed. If a partial Thyroidectomy is being performed, then only one lobe of the gland is removed.
Your surgeon may place a drain to allow fluids to flow out of the area before closing the incision.
The muscles and tissues are stitched back together and the incision is closed with sutures and covered with a sterile bandage.