Thyroid SurgeryWritten by:
The thyroid is a gland located in the neck, which is characterized by being shaped like a butterfly. The function of this endocrine gland is to produce hormones and help control the metabolism of the human body.
The thyroid gland can present two types of alterations: when there is a function increased by the production of too many hormones (Hyperthyroidism) or when the thyroid gland generates few hormones (Hypothyroidism). Hyperthyroidism produces symptoms such as anxiety, heat intolerance, weakness and excessive sweating, among others. With Hypothyroidism, however, depression, cold intolerance, weight gain and fatigue appear, mainly.
The Thyroid Surgery consists of total extirpation (thyroidectomy) or partially the thyroid gland depending on different pathological processes that can affect it. Thyroid surgery is performed under general anesthesia and varies depending on the type of surgery that each pathology requires, partial or total resection of the gland without or with associated lymph node dissection.
Thyroid Surgery should be used in the following cases:
-In nodules or thyroid cysts
-In nodular goiters
-In thyroid cancer
-In thyroid disorders without response to medical treatment
The experience and expertise of the surgeon is an important factor in the duration of not only thyroid interventions, but any type of surgery. In expert hands, the scar produced by the operation is as small as possible, the minimum necessary to remove the thyroid gland safely. The average term for a thyroid intervention is between one and two and a half hours.
The recurrent nerve
The recurrent nerve is a branch of the vagus or pneumogastric nerve (X cranial nerve), which drives sensory and motor impulses. It is responsible for the innervation of the vocal cords, and runs through the tracheoesophageal space, located behind the thyroid gland. It must be identified in the surgical act, since his injury implies phonation defects.
It is important to identify the recurrent nerve on the side where the intervention is being made (right in the case of right hemithyroidectomy, left in the case of the left or bilateral in the case of total thyroidectomy). The non-identification of the nerve and its possible injury imply permanent phonation problems.