World journal of surgical oncology 2017 10 2415(1) 190 doi 10.1186/s12957-017-1261-x
The surgical resection extension in well-differentiated thyroid cancer is controversially discussed with the possibility of an overtreatment on the one hand against the risk of local disease recurrence. The aim of this study is to evaluate how the surgical resection extension with the adjunction of radioiodine therapy affects postoperative morbidity and the oncologic outcome of patients primarily treated for well-differentiated thyroid cancer.
All patients undergoing primary surgery for a well-differentiated, non-recurrent thyroid cancer from January 2005 to April 2013 at Tuebingen University Hospital were retrospectively analyzed.
Papillary thyroid cancer (PTC) was present in 73 patients (including 27 papillary microcarinoma) and follicular thyroid cancer in 14 patients. Fifty-six of 87 patients (64%) underwent one-stage surgery, of which 26 patients (30%) received simultaneous lymph node dissection (LND). The remaining 31 patients (36%) underwent a two-stage completion surgery (29 patients with LND). Only in three patients a single lymph node metastasis was newly detected during two-stage completion surgery. Patients with LND at either one-stage and two-stage completion surgery had a significant higher rate of transient postoperative hypocalcemia. Postoperative adjuvant radioiodine therapy was performed in 68 of 87 patients (78%). After a median follow-up of 69 months [range 9-104], one local recurrence was documented in a patient suffering from PTC 23 months after surgery.
No prophylactic two-stage lymphadenectomy should be performed in case of well-differentiated thyroid cancer to avoid unnecessary complication without any proven oncologic benefit.