Type of Surgery
Last updated: 02/17/2009
Screening tests indicate that about 6% of the United States population has some disturbance of thyroid function, but many people with mildly abnormal levels of thyroid hormone do not have any disease symptoms. It is estimated that between 12 and 15...
million people in the United States and Canada are receiving treatment for thyroid disorders as of 2002. In 2001, there were approximately 34,500 thyroidectomies performed in the United States. Females are somewhat more likely than males to require a thyroidectomy.
A thyroidectomy involves the surgical removal of all or part of the thyroid gland. Surgeons often perform a thyroidectomy when a patient has thyroid cancer or some other condition of the thyroid gland (such as hyperthyroidism). Other indications for surgery include cosmetic (very enlarged thyroid), or symptomatic obstruction (causing difficulties in swallowing or breathing). One of the complications of "thyroidectomy" is voice change and patients are strongly advised to only be operated on by surgeons who protect the voice by using electronic nerve monitoring.
In 2000, children's risk of surgery increased from 17.9% in 1981 to 20.2% in 1998/99, while ENT surgery rates increased by 21% over the period.
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