Background: Permanent hypoparathyroidism after total thyroidectomy is a rare but potentially serious iatrogenic complication. The aim of this study was to investigate the rate of recovery from postoperative, permanent hypoparathyroidism in patients undergoing thyroidectomy without parathyroid autotransplantation. Methods: This study was a prospective case series with a postoperative follow-up of up to 3 years. We enrolled patients with thyroid cancer who underwent total thyroidectomy with central compartment dissection, with or without lateral neck dissection, and who had postoperative permanent hypoparathyroidism, defined as serum levels of intact parathyroid hormone (PTH) <15 pg/mL for at least 1 year. In the postoperative follow-up period, the serum levels of PTH and calcium were measured regularly. Recovery from permanent hypoparathyroidism was defined as return to normal serum levels of PTH (15-65 pg/mL) and calcium (8.5-10.1 mg/dL) without calcium and/or vitamin D supplementation. Results: In the 1467 patients who underwent total thyroidectomy, 22 presented with permanent postoperative hypoparathyroidism. In 5 of these 22 patients, the PTH levels increased steadily and returned to normal in 27.6±2.9 months, after which supplementation of calcium and vitamin D could be discontinued. Conclusions: Although recovery from permanent hypoparathyroidism is rare, patients should be monitored for serum PTH levels so that unnecessary treatments such as calcium and vitamin D supplementation can be avoided.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism