Procedures Thyroid & Parathyroids
Thyroid surgery: Usually it is done for tumors in the gland or for enlargement. The operation involves partial or complete removal of the gland. The patient usually spends the night in the hospital and goes home the next day. The patient may or may not need to take the thyroid hormone supplements. This is decided on a case by case basis.
Bleeding, infection, blood clots, recurrent laryngeal damage (hoarseness or weak voice), hypoparathyroidism or hypocalcemia. Need for more surgery. The recurrent laryngeal nerve innervates the vocal cords and if one is damaged this can cause hoarseness. If both nerves are damaged the patient may need speech therapy and a temporary tracheostomy. The voice likely will remain weak. This is rare but can happen mostly in total thyroidectomies especially or with cancer.
Parathyoidectory: Usually done to remove one or several parathyroid glands that are growing tumors or working too much causing the body to waste calcium. This in turn causes elevated calcium levels which can be detrimental for the system. The most common cause is a parathyroid adenoma which is a benign hyper-functioning tumor. Removal of this tumor usually takes care of the problem. The operation is also done with 24 hour observation. There are other conditions that require removal of the parathyroids and these are usually seen in patients that have end stage renal disease.