laryngoscopy thyroid surgery

laryngoscopy thyroid surgery

laryngoscopy thyroid surgery

Thyroid tumors can sometimes affect the vocal cords. If you are going to have surgery to treat thyroid cancer, a procedure called a laryngoscopy will probably be done first to see if the vocal cords are moving normally. For this exam, the doctor looks down the throat at the larynx (voice box) with special mirrors or with a laryngoscope, a thin tube with a light and a lens on the end for viewing.

A retrospective chart review of a 3-year, single-surgeon experience was performed. Records of patients undergoing thyroid surgery were reviewed for patient voice complaints, prior neck surgery, surgeon-documented voice quality, and results of laryngoscopy.

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Preoperative and postoperative laryngoscopy has been recommended for diagnostic and forensic reasons as a standard procedure in all patients who undergo thyroid surgery. The aim of this study was to find a more selective approach by defining patients at risk of developing vocal fold palsy (VFP).


Of 464 patients, 6% had abnormal laryngoscopy findings, including 11 cord paralyses (2%). Preoperatively, 39% of patients had voice complaints, but only 10% had a corresponding abnormality on laryngoscopy. Only 4% of patients had a surgeon-documented voice abnormality with 72% corresponding abnormalities on laryngoscopy, including 8 cord paralyses. When eliminating patient voice complaints and using only history of prior neck surgery and surgeon-documented voice abnormality as criteria for preoperative laryngoscopy, only 1 cord paralysis is missed and sensitivity (91%) and specificity (86%) were high. Also, when compared with routine laryngoscopy, 84% fewer laryngoscopies are performed.


When using patients' voice complaints as criteria for preoperative laryngoscopy, the yield is low. We recommend using surgeon-documented voice abnormalities and history of prior neck surgery as criteria for preoperative laryngoscopy.

10 common questions about laryngoscopy thyroid surgery

1What is a laryngoscopy procedure?
Laryngoscopy is a procedure a doctor uses to look at the larynx (voice box), including the vocal cords, as well as nearby structures like the back of the throat. ... The laryngoscope is put in through your nose or mouth and down your throat. Some laryngoscopes are flexible (fiber-optic), while others are rigid (stiff).
2Why is laryngoscopy done?
Laryngoscopy is performed to: diagnose a persistent cough, throat pain, bleeding, hoarseness, or bad breath. ... visualize or biopsy a mass or tumor in the throat or on the vocal cords. diagnose difficulty swallowing
3Who performs laryngoscopy?
Who Performs Laryngoscopy. A physician, usually an ear, nose, and throat specialist (otolaryngologist) or a surgeon
4Can a laryngoscopy detect throat cancer?
Although there is no specific blood test that detects laryngeal or hypopharyngeal cancer, several laboratory tests, including blood and urine tests, may be done to help determine the diagnosis and learn more about the disease. Laryngoscopy. A laryngoscopy can be performed in 3 ways: Indirect laryngoscopy
5Is laryngoscopy painful?
Laryngoscopy is performed to: diagnose a constant cough, throat pain, bleeding, hoarseness, or constant bad breath. check for inflammation (swelling and irritation) ... diagnose voice problems, such as weak voice, hoarse voice, breathy voice, or no voice.
6Are you awake for a laryngoscopy?
Your doctor uses a laryngoscope to push down your tongue and lift up the epiglottis. That's the flap of cartilage that covers your windpipe. ... Direct laryngoscopy can take up to 45 minutes. You'll be given what's called general anesthesia, so that you will not be awake during the procedure.
7What happens during a laryngoscopy?
A laryngoscopy is an exam that gives your doctor a close-up view of your larynx and throat. The larynx is your voice box. It's located at the top of your windpipe, or trachea. ... Air passing through your larynx and over the vocal folds causes them to vibrate and produce sound
8Can you talk after a laryngoscopy?
Your doctor may ask you to speak as little as possible for 1 to 2 weeks after the procedure. If you speak, use your normal tone of voice and do not talk for very long
9Is manometry painful?
Esophageal manometry is generally safe, and complications are rare. You may, however, experience some discomfort during the test, including: Gagging when the tube passes into your throat
10Does endoscopy look at throat?
Endoscopy is a test that an ear, nose and throat (ENT) specialist uses to look at the back of your throat. An endoscope is a long, flexible tube. It has a camera and light at one end, and an eyepiece at the other. Your doctor uses it to see the inside of your nose and throat very clearly.


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