The minimally-invasive thyroidectomy incision: a histological analysis.

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This article has been peer reviewed. It was published in: Medical science monitor : international medical journal of experimental and clinical research.

2011 Feb;17(2):SC7-10.

The published version is available at DOI: 10.12659/MSM.881377. Copyright © International Scientific Literature


BACKGROUND: Minimally invasive thyroidectomy (MIT) has gained popularity in the surgical management of benign and malignant pathology of the thyroid. One of the main benefits of utilizing this technique is the use of smaller incisions resulting in increased cosmetic satisfaction. Unfortunately, the retraction required for adequate exposure during MIT may lead to skin damage, impaired wound healing and poor cosmetic outcomes. Some have proposed that excising incision edges prior to closure may improve cosmesis. A review of the literature does not reveal any histologic evidence to support this technique.

MATERIAL/METHODS: In this prospective observational study, nine subjects undergoing MIT were identified. Both the superior and inferior skin edges were excised and labeled for orientation. Specimens were sent for hematoxylin and eosin staining and histologic analysis by a staff pathologist.

RESULTS: All specimens showed no significant findings such as damage to the architecture of the dermis, acute inflammation, edema or evidence of hemorrhage. Focal blood vessel ectasia within the dermis was identified in three of nine subjects.

CONCLUSIONS: Our findings do not yield a histological basis supporting the routine trimming of incisions during MIT. Although no significant findings were noted histologically, further studies are warranted to investigate the long-term cosmetic outcome of MIT incisions.

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