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01.03.2012 | Original Article | Ausgabe 3/2012

Langenbeck's Archives of Surgery 3/2012

Alternating from subtotal thyroid resection to total thyroidectomy in the treatment of Graves’ disease prevents recurrences but increases the frequency of permanent hypoparathyroidism

Zeitschrift:
Langenbeck's Archives of Surgery > Ausgabe 3/2012
Autoren:
Johannes Järhult, Per-Olof Andersson, Linda Duncker

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to compare the results of three different surgical techniques in the treatment of Graves’ disease.

Methods

All patients operated on due to Graves’ disease at a single institution between 1985 and 2009 were followed up for a median time of 152 months. The same endocrine surgeon operated altogether 265 patients; 111 with bilateral subtotal thyroid resection, 65 with lobectomy + unilateral subtotal resection (Dunhill’s operation) and 99 with total thyroidectomy.

Results

Recurrence of thyreotoxicosis was seen in 11 (9.9%) patients operated on with bilateral thyroid resection, in two (3.1%) of those operated on with Dunhill’s method and in none treated with total thyroidectomy. Permanent hypoparathyroidism was observed in 6% of the patients with total thyroidectomy, in 0.9% of those operated with bilateral subtotal resection and in none of the patients with Dunhill’s procedure (p < 0.001). The frequency of permanent paresis of one recurrent laryngeal nerve was 2%, 0% and 1.5%, respectively, in the three different groups. At follow-up, thyroxine supplementation therapy was given to 81 (73%) of the patients treated with bilateral subtotal resection, to 58 (89%) of those treated with Dunhill’s operation and to all of those treated with total thyroidectomy.

Conclusions

It is concluded that surgical treatment of Graves’ disease with Dunhill’s procedure, leaving a remnant of 1–2 g, seems to minimize the risks of both recurrences and permanent hypoparathyroidism.

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