ISSN 1308-8734 | E-ISSN 1308-8742
Original Article
The Use of Harmonic Scalpels in Thyroidectomies: Clinical Experiences
1 Atatürk University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of General Surgery, Erzurum, Turkey  
Eurasian J Med 2008; 40: 75-78

Key Words: Harmonic scalpel, Thyroid, Surgery
Abstract

 

Objective: Many studies have been conducted to investigate the efficacy of harmonic scalpels in thyroidectomies. Here, we present our clinical experiences with the instrument.

 

Materials and Methods: The study was conducted at the General Surgery Department of the Ataturk University School of Medicine between January 2005 and July 2008. It was a prospective, randomized, controlled study. Patients with benign nodular goiter (BNG) were included in the study and randomly divided into three groups. The first group consisted of 47 patients, the second group consisted of 57 patients, and the third group consisted of 41 patients. Patients in the first group underwent the classical thyroidectomy. Those in the second group had only the superior thyroid arteries and veins ligated (with silk or polyglactin), while the other vascular structures were divided using a harmonic scalpel. In the third group, all arteries and veins of the thyroid gland were divided using a harmonic scalpel. In each group, mean operation time, amount of bleeding, amount of postoperative drainage, and other postoperative complications were recorded.

Results: Operation time was significantly lower for patients in the third group. The degree of bleeding and postoperative drainage was lower in the second and third groups with respect to the first group. There was no significant difference among the groups in terms of the development of transient hypocalcemia or voice impairment.

Conclusion: We conclude that the use of harmonic scalpels for a thyroidectomy is safe, shortens operative time, and decreases intraoperative bleeding.

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