Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Six Hour Surgery / No Problem??? / Wrong!

I was asked to do a second opinion on a prestige medical center in Chicago. The patient was sent to sugery because of suspicious biopsy result of a thyroid nodule. The patient was told she had normal thyroid tests and a normal gland except for the nodule. Her family sat out in the waiting room 6 hours! They thought the worst, when they were told the surgery only would take 90-120 minutes. An Endocrine surgeon did the surgery. When she woke up, they told her everything was O.K. She was shocked the surgery was 6 hours long, and they found no cancer, only thyroiditis. She was suspicious because they told there was no abnormality of her thyroid before the surgery. They sent her home on thyroid hormone. She continued to be upset that the surgery was so long, and no cancer was found. She was troubled enough to request I do a virtual second opinion, on She sent me all the records and the slides from the surgery. After looking at the records, it was clear there was evidence she had Chronic Thyroiditis before the surgery that was missed, because her TSH's were all above 2.5, and she had mildly positive anti-TG antibody. I was just about to tell her the long surgery was due to the severe inflammation that occurs around the thyroid in Hashimoto's thyroidtitis, and not to worry, and all was well, when I looked at the surgical pathology. The pathology department
failed to note a follicular variant of Papillary thyroid cancer. I called the pathologist, and told him what I found. They did recuts, and agreed with my diagnosis. The cancer was nothing to worry about the surgeon told her. Obviously, she had lost all trust in her university physicians, and requested they send me all the recuts. She has an appointment to see me in Los Angeles to go over her opinions now that she knows she has cancer.

It is never to late to have a thyroidologist do a second opinion, even after the surgery! Check for one of us near you.

Be Proactive.
It is your Thyroid Gland.
Remember, Endocrinologists may be too busy with diabetes to be up to date with all the modern advances in clinical thyroidology. Go to the fountainhead of knowledge
in clinical thyroidology, your local expert clinical thyroidologist.
Be cautious and always get expert help before surgery, or as in this case after the result was smelling very fishy.


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