Indeterminate thyroid nodules: a challenge for the surgical strategy.
ABSTRACT Because no clinical parameter can establish the final status of a cytologically indeterminate thyroid nodule (ITN) or nodal-metastases in case of malignancy, the initial surgical strategy should define an oncologically adequate procedure with low morbidity.
The prognostic relevance of sex, age, tumor sizes, multifocality, thyroid function, and recurrence was analyzed in 156 consecutive patients according to the presence of malignancy and nodal metastases. The accuracy of frozen sections to reveal malignancy was determined. Clinical parameters were compared with regard to their ability to identify malignancy and nodal metastases in an ITN to determine an appropriate initial operative strategy.
One hundred and eighteen (75.6%) patients underwent (total) thyroidectomy, 37 (23.7%) patients underwent hemithyroidectomy, and 1 patient underwent isthmus resection. Fifty-five (35.3%) patients showed malignancy. First step lymphadenectomy (lymph node dissection along the recurrent laryngeal nerve before removing the thyroid lobe) was performed in 142 patients documenting 10 nodal metastases. Comparing benign and malignant ITN, no association was found for sex (P = .17), age (P = 1.0), tumor sizes (P = .33, P = .12, P = .19 for < or =30 mm, < or =40 mm, and < or =50 mm, respectively), or thyroid function (P = .26). The determination of malignancy by frozen section showed a sensitivity of 30.9% and a specificity of 100%. No permanent hypoparathyroidism or recurrent laryngeal nerve palsy was observed postoperatively.
Because of the failure of available clinical parameters to predict malignancy in cytologically ITN, hemithyroidectomy in unilateral goiter and thyroidectomy in bilateral goiter is recommended. Ipsilateral "first step central neck dissection" on the side of ITN offers the advantages of oncologically adequate resection and staging with a low morbidity, as well as avoids reoperation.
- [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: OBJECTIVES: The authors analyse the predictive diagnostic accuracy of fine-needle aspiration cytology (FNAC) and frozen section examination in adult patients operated for thyroid nodules. PATIENTS AND METHODS: The same pathologist performed macroscopic and cytological examination, followed by frozen section examination on each operative specimen. FNAC results were classified into three groups: benign, malignant or suspicious of malignancy. Frozen section examination was also classified into three categories: benign, malignant or suspicious of malignancy when not all criteria of malignancy were present. RESULTS: One hundred and sixty-six (82%) of the 202 patients included in the study were females. Patients had a mean age of 51years. Thyroid carcinoma was diagnosed on final pathology in 22% of women and 25% of men. FNAC results were benign in 85% of cases, malignant in 9% of cases and atypical or suspicious in 6% of cases, with a specificity of more than 99% and a sensitivity, including and excluding microcarcinomas, of 36% and 48%, respectively. The diagnostic accuracy of FNAC was 84% and 89%, after excluding micro-carcinomas. Frozen section was benign in 85% of cases, malignant in 13% of cases and suspicious in 2% of cases, with a specificity of more than 99% and a sensitivity, including and excluding microcarcinomas, of 56% and 68%, respectively. The diagnostic accuracy of frozen section was 89% and 90%, after excluding microcarcinomas. The diagnostic accuracy of the combination of the two examinations was 94% after excluding microcarcinomas. CONCLUSION: FNAC and frozen section have a comparable predictive diagnostic accuracy. Frozen section is requested by the surgeon not only on the basis of preoperative FNAC, especially when it is suspicious, or even indeterminate, but also in the light of the macroscopic surgical findings.European Annals of Otorhinolaryngology, Head and Neck Diseases 05/2013;
- [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Molecular testing of fine-needle aspiration (FNA) results helps diagnose thyroid cancer, although the additional cost of this adjunct has not been studied. We hypothesized that FNA molecular testing of two indeterminate categories (follicular lesion of undetermined significance and follicular/Hürthle cell neoplasm) can be cost saving. For a hypothetical group of euthyroid patients with a 1-cm or larger solitary thyroid nodule, a decision-tree model was constructed to compare the estimated costs of initial evaluation according to the current American Thyroid Association guidelines, either with molecular testing (MT) or without [standard of care (StC)]. Model endpoints were either benign FNA results or definitive histological diagnosis. Molecular testing added $104 per patient to the overall cost of nodule evaluation (StC $578 vs. MT $682). In this distributed cost model, MT was associated with a decrease in the number of diagnostic lobectomies (9.7% vs. StC 11.6%), whereas initial total thyroidectomy was more frequent (18.2% vs. StC 16.1%). Although MT use added a diagnostic cost of $5031 to each additional indicated total thyroidectomy ($11,383), the cumulative cost was still less than the comparable cost of performing lobectomy ($7684) followed by completion thyroidectomy ($11,954) in the StC pathway, when indicated by histological results. In sensitivity analysis, savings were demonstrated if molecular testing cost was less than $870. Molecular testing of cytologically indeterminate FNA results is cost saving predominantly because of reduction in two-stage thyroidectomy. Appropriate use of emerging molecular testing techniques may thus help optimize patient care, improve resource use, and avoid unnecessary operation.The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism 03/2012; 97(6):1905-12. · 6.31 Impact Factor
- [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Indeterminate thyroid nodules (ITN) constitute the gray zone of thyroid fine-needle aspiration cytology (FNAC). About 70-80 % of ITN are later diagnosed as benign; therefore, it is very important to identify the predictors of malignancy. Aim of the study was to summarize published data about clinical risk factors for malignancy in patients with ITN and thereby provide more robust estimates of the effect of these risk factors. Sources comprised studies published through December 2012. Original articles that investigated clinical parameters as potential predictors of malignancy in ITN were identified. Two authors performed the data extraction independently. A meta-analysis of 19 relevant studies was conducted that included 3,494 patients with ITN according to FNAC. The pooled prevalence of malignancy was 28 % (95 % CI 23-33), 26 % in females and 34 % in males. The pooled OR was 1.51 (95 % CI 1.2-1.83) for males and 0.68 (95 % CI 0.53-0.88) for females. Regarding the nodule's size, the pooled OR was 2.10 (95 % CI 1.26-3.50) for nodules >4 cm in diameter. Analysis of the patient age as a risk factor was not feasible because of marked difference found between the studies. In patients with indeterminate thyroid nodules diagnosed at FNAC, the pooled rate of malignancy from 19 studies was 28 %. Patients that are male and have ITN greater than 4 cm in diameter should be considered at higher risk of cancer.Endocrine 10/2013; · 1.42 Impact Factor