FAQs About Thyroid Surgery
posted: May 13, 2022.
Get all the answers to your questions about thyroid surgery.
If you’re about to undergo thyroid surgery, chances are good that you’ll have questions for our Los Angeles, CA, otolaryngologists Dr. Jahangir Sharifi and Dr. Cheryl Nocon. Whether you’re dealing with cancer, a goiter or nodules, thyroidectomy may be necessary to remove part or all of your thyroid.
Why is thyroid surgery necessary?
The thyroid is a gland that regulates your body’s hormones. It also plays an incredibly important role in your body’s metabolism; however, problems can arise with your thyroid. Surgery may be necessary if you develop a lump or growth that is or could develop into cancer. Enlarged goiters that put pressure on the trachea or cause trouble swallowing will also require surgery. Sometimes surgery is necessary for treating hyperthyroidism, especially if it isn’t properly controlled with medication.
What type of anesthesia is used?
In most cases, general anesthesia is used for thyroid surgery. This means that you will be asleep and won’t feel a thing. Since you will be undergoing general anesthesia, our Los Angeles ENT doctors will provide you with instructions on when you need to stop drinking or eating before surgery and whether you need to stop taking any prescription or over-the-counter medications days prior.
Do I need to take hormones?
You will need to start taking thyroid hormones daily for the rest of your life if you undergo a total thyroidectomy. Since your thyroid cannot produce these hormones, synthetic hormones will need to be taken. We will work with you to determine the proper dose to maintain the ideal thyroid hormone levels.
What is the recovery process like?
Expect to experience a limited range of motion in the neck after surgery. Depending on the extent of surgery, most individuals can return to work and resume normal activities within 2-3 weeks after surgery.
Will my voice change after surgery?
You may notice some changes in your voice after surgery. Most patients report hoarseness or other temporary changes, but this only lasts six to eight weeks. Rarely are these changes permanent.
Do you still have questions or concerns about your upcoming thyroid surgery? If so, don’t hesitate to call our Los Angeles ENT team at LA Sinus & Allergy Specialists at (323) 226-0022. We would be happy to sit down with you to talk you through the process.