World Journal of Surgery

, Volume 40, Issue 1, pp 110–116 | Cite as

Long-Term Voice Outcomes After Robotic Thyroidectomy

  • Chang Myeon Song
  • Bo Ram Yun
  • Yong Bae Ji
  • Eui Suk Sung
  • Kyung Rae Kim
  • Kyung TaeEmail author
Original Scientific Report



The purpose of this study was to evaluate the long-term voice function after robotic thyroidectomy in comparison with conventional transcervical thyroidectomy.


We prospectively evaluated the voice functions of 54 patients with thyroid nodules who underwent robotic thyroidectomy by a gasless unilateral axillary or axillo-breast approach and of 70 patients who underwent conventional thyroidectomy. Subjective voice symptom score (VSS) was evaluated in questionnaires before thyroidectomy and then at 3, 6, 12, and 24 months after surgery. Objective acoustic parameters analyzed during the same period included fundamental frequency, jitter, shimmer, noise-to-harmonic ratio, highest frequency, frequency and intensity range, and maximal phonation time.


At 3 months after surgery, VSS was better in the robotic group than in the conventional group. At 2 years after surgery, VSS had recovered to the pre-operative level in the robotic group, whereas it remained significantly worse at 2 years in the conventional group. The phonatory frequency range and highest frequency were significantly wider and higher, respectively, in the robotic group than the conventional group at 6, 12, and 24 months post-operatively. Within the robotic group, the frequency range and highest frequency recovered to pre-operative levels by 6 months, whereas in the conventional group they remained below the pre-operative levels at 2 years post-operatively. There were no differences in other acoustic parameters between the two groups of patients at any period.


Up to 2 years post-operatively, robotic thyroidectomy has advantages in terms of recovery of voice symptoms and acoustic parameters over conventional thyroidectomy.


Thyroid Nodule Recurrent Laryngeal Nerve Vocal Fold Conventional Group Acoustic Parameter 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

Chang Myeon Song, Bo Ram Yun, Yong Bae Ji, Eui Suk Sung, Kyung Rae Kim, and Kyung Tae have no conflicts of interest or financial ties to disclose.


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Copyright information

© Société Internationale de Chirurgie 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Chang Myeon Song
    • 1
  • Bo Ram Yun
    • 1
  • Yong Bae Ji
    • 1
  • Eui Suk Sung
    • 1
  • Kyung Rae Kim
    • 1
  • Kyung Tae
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery, College of MedicineHanyang UniversitySeoulKorea

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