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Clin Otolaryngol. 2007 Feb;32(1):28-31.

A randomised controlled trial of routine suction drainage after elective thyroid and parathyroid surgery with ultrasound evaluation of fluid collection.

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  • 1Department of Otorhinolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery, St Mary's Hospital, London, UK. mail@suki.org.uk

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To determine the need for suction drainage after elective thyroid and parathyroid surgery.

DESIGN:

Randomised controlled trial.

SETTING:

University teaching hospital.

PARTICIPANTS:

Patients requiring elective thyroid or parathyroid surgery were recruited and informed consent was obtained (n = 100). Before wound closure, patients were randomised into either group A (to remain without suction drainage) or group B (to receive suction drainage). Excluded patients were those requiring associated neck dissection and those with bleeding diatheses, all of whom would necessarily require drainage in our unit.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES:

Primary - ultrasound evaluation of any collection in the thyroid bed, performed 1-day postoperatively. Secondary - postoperative complications; length of in-patient stay.

RESULTS:

One hundred patients completed the study, and groups A and B comprised 50 patients each. Patients in each group exhibited a mean age of 49 years, and a male to female ratio of 1 : 9. Both groups were also well-matched regarding type of operation, size of tumour and histopathological diagnosis. Modal and median postoperative neck collection volume on ultrasound examination was 0 and 0 cm(3) respectively (range 0-16 cm(3)) in group A and was 0 and 0 cm(3) (range 0-70 cm(3)) in group B. This difference was not statistically significant, but three patients with a haematoma were all in the suction drainage group. Difference in complication rates between groups was also not statistically significant. Modal and median length of in-patient stay was 2 and 2 days respectively (range 2-3 days) in group A and 3 and 3 days (range 2-4 days) in group B, and this difference was statistically significant (P = 0.0006).

CONCLUSION:

Routine suction drainage after uncomplicated elective thyroid and parathyroid surgery appears unnecessary, and prolongs in-patient stay.

PMID:
17298307
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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