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Surgery. 2002 Dec;132(6):1070-3; discussion 1073-4.

Minimally invasive video-assisted thyroidectomy for papillary carcinoma: a prospective study of its completeness.

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Department of Surgery, University of Pisa, S. Chiara Hospital, Via Roma 67, 56100 Pisa, Italy.



The effectiveness of minimally invasive video-assisted thyroidectomy (MIVAT) in papillary thyroid carcinoma is still debated. Some are concerned about this procedure in patients with thyroid cancer. This prospective study aimed to demonstrate that near-total thyroidectomy can be performed by MIVAT with similar results compared with open thyroidectomy.


A total of 33 patients with a thyroid nodule proven to be a papillary thyroid carcinoma underwent a near-total thyroidectomy. They were randomly assigned to group A (n = 16) or group B (n = 17) who were treated either by MIVAT or conventional near-total thyroidectomy, respectively. Iodine-131 thyroid bed uptake and serum thyroglobulin were measured 1 month after operation. Data were analyzed by unpaired t test and Mann-Whitney statistic methods.


. Mean iodine-131 uptake was 5.1 +/- 4.9% in group A and 4.6 +/- 6.7% in group B. Mean thyroglobulin serum levels were 5.3 +/- 5.8 ng/mL in group A and 7.6 +/- 21.7 ng/mL in group B. The differences were not statistically significant.


The results of this study showed that the completeness obtained with MIVAT is similar to that obtained with open thyroidectomy, with the great advantage of a minimal neck wound. No conclusions can be drawn in terms of influence of MIVAT on the outcome of the patients with small papillary thyroid carcinoma.

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