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Indian J Cancer. 2018 Jan-Mar;55(1):23-32. doi: 10.4103/ijc.IJC_528_17.

Surgical outcomes of thyroid cancer patients in a tertiary cancer center in India.

Author information

Department of Head and Neck Surgical Oncology, Tata Memorial Hospital, Mumbai, Maharashtra, India.
Department of Nuclear Medicine, Radiation Medicine Centre, Bhabha Atomic Research Centre, Mumbai, Maharashtra, India.
Clinical Research Secretariat, Tata Memorial Hospital, Mumbai, Maharashtra, India.



Surgery is the mainstay in the management of thyroid cancer. Surgical outcomes need to be tempered against the excellent prognosis of the disease.


This study aims to study the surgical outcomes including the 30-day morbidity and 5-year survival of thyroid cancer patients.

Settings and Design:

Retrospective analysis of a prospectively maintained surgical database in a tertiary cancer center in India.

Materials and Methods:

We analyzed 221 surgically treated patients in the year 2012.

Statistical Analysis:

Used IBM SPSS 24.0 (Armonk, NY) with p < 0.05.


The median age was 40 years with predominantly papillary thyroid carcinoma (55%). Localized disease in 47% of cases, locoregional disease in 42.5% and distant metastasis in 10.2% of cases at presentation was noted. Treatment naïve patients were 71% and revision surgeries were done in 29% patients. Extended thyroidectomy constituted 11% of the surgeries. Temporary hypocalcemia was seen in 30.8% of patients, 5% requiring intravenous calcium supplementation. Vocal cord palsy as per nerve at risk and chyle leak were seen in 4.5% and 3.1%, respectively. Aggressive histology, extended thyroidectomy, and inadvertent parathyroidectomy were significant factors associated with complications. Five year estimated overall survival with median follow-up of 50 months was 98%, and event-free survival was 84.8%. Advanced age, distant metastasis at presentation and aggressive histology connoted poor outcomes.


Thyroid cancer, irrespective of the extent of disease, has good prognosis. Aggressive histology, the extent of thyroid surgery, distant metastasis and age are important factors, which should be factored in the algorithm of thyroid cancer management.


Complication; surgery; survival; thyroid cancer

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