Why you need thyroidectomy?


Thyroidectomy is the procedure to remove all or some part of thyroid gland. Thyroid is butterfly-shaped gland at bottom of neck. It produces hormones which regulates your metabolism.

Types of Thyroidectomy:

  1. Hemi-thyroidectomy- The entire isthmus is removed with 1 lobe.
  2. Sub-total thyroidectomy- The removal of most of the part of both the lobes of thyroid tissue on one or both sides.
  3. Partial thyroidectomy- The removal of the gland in front of trachea after mobilization.
  4. Near total thyroidectomy- Both lobes are removed except small amount of thyroid tissue in the surrounding area of recurrent laryngeal nerve entry point and the superior parathyroid gland.
  5. Total thyroidectomy- The gland is removed completely.

Why is it required?

Thyroidectomy may be advised, if you have any of the following conditions:

  1. Thyroid cancer.
  2. Goiter.
  3. Hyperthyroidism.


There are risks in every surgery:

  1. Infection.
  2. The airway is obstructed due to bleeding.
  3. Due to nerve damage the voice becomes weak.


Generally, thyroidectomy is performed under general anesthesia.

If the surgery due to thyroid cancer, then nearby lymph nodes are also examined. The surgery takes 1-2 hours depending on the extent of surgery required.

There are some approaches for the surgery-

  1. Conventional thyroidectomy- In this procedure, a cut is made at the center of neck to directly access thyroid gland.
  2. Transoral thyroidectomy- An incision is made inside mouth and avoids the cut on neck.
  3. Endoscopic thyroidectomy- Various small cuts are made and a small instruments with a video camera is inserted through the cuts made. The camera guide the surgeon through the entire surgery.

After the surgery, some patients feel neck pain and weak voice. But this is usually temporary. This could be due to the irritation of breathing tube, which is inserted in windpipe during surgery. You can eat or drink as usual. It may take time for the scar to disappear.

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