Endoscopic thyroidectomy and parathyroidectomy by the axillary approach
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Background: The use of endoscopic procedures leads to a reduction in the size of the surgical scar, making it more inconspicuous. In this paper, we evaluated the merits and limits of endoscopic neck surgery. Methods: Between August 1999 and July 2000, 102 patients underwent neck surgery in our department for thyroid or parathyroid disease. Twenty-eight of them were treated by the axillary. A 12-mm and two 5-mm trocars were inserted through the skin of the axilla. Carbon dioxide was then insufflated up to 4 mmHg, and the endoscopic surgery was performed. Results: Endoscopic procedures were performed successfully in 26 cases (19 thyroidectomies and seven parathyroidectomies). There were two conversions to open procedures. The mean operating times for the thyroidectomies and parathyroidectomies were 212 and 171 min, respectively. No evidence of injury to the recurrent laryngeal nerve was observed in any of the cases. The postoperative cosmetic status of the patients was excellent. Conclusion: We believe that endoscopic thyroidectomy and parathyroidectomy by the axillary approach will find a role in the treatment of endocrine diseases in the neck.
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