Transoral endoscopic thyroidectomy for papillary thyroid microcarcinoma: Initial experience of a single surgeon

Young Jun Chai, Jung Kee Chung, Angkoon Anuwong, Gianlorenzo Dionigi, Hoon Yub Kim, Ki Tae Hwang, Seung Chul Heo, Ka Hee Yi, Kyu Eun Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

72 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: Recently, transoral endoscopic thyroidectomy (TOET) is receiving attention because it is regarded as a true minimally invasive surgery in that it does not leave scars on any part of the body and the area of flap dissection is similar to that of open surgery. In this study, we present the surgical procedures and initial outcomes of TOET in the treatment of papillary thyroid microcarcinoma (PTMC) patients. Methods: The medical records of patients who underwent TOET for PTMC between July 2016 and February 2017 were retrospectively reviewed. Indication of TOET was PTMC without capsular invasion or lymph node metastasis on preoperative imaging studies. Results: Ten female patients were enrolled. Seven patients underwent thyroid lobectomy and three patients underwent isthmusectomy. The mean age and tumor size was 43.3 ± 11.5 years and 0.6 ± 0.2 cm, respectively. Operation time for lobectomy and isthmusectomy was 121.1 ± 30.7 (range, 65-148) and 90.0 ± 9.2 minutes (range, 82-100 minutes), respectively. The mean number of retrieved lymph nodes was 2.7 ± 1.7. Two patients had transient vocal cord palsy, which recovered in three months. There was no case with subcutaneous emphysema, surgical site infection, postoperative bleeding, or mental nerve injury. Conclusion: TOET was feasible and could be performed safely for PTMC. TOET might become a new treatment option for the patients who do not want to leave visible scars on the body.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)70-75
Number of pages6
JournalAnnals of Surgical Treatment and Research
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Aug
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was supported by a clinical research grant­inaid from the Seoul Metropolitan Government ­ Seoul National University Boramae Medical Center (03­2017­11). We would like to thank Han Mo Sung for data collection.

Publisher Copyright:
Copyright © 2017, the Korean Surgical Society.


  • Natural orifice endoscopic surgery
  • Papillary thyroid cancer
  • Papillary thyroid microcarcinoma
  • Thyroidectomy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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