Reoperative Lymph Node Dissection for Recurrent Papillary Thyroid Cancer and Effect on Serum Thyroglobulin

Department of Surgery, Montefiore Medical Center/Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, NY, USA, .
Annals of Surgical Oncology (Impact Factor: 3.93). 04/2012; 19(9):2951-7. DOI: 10.1245/s10434-012-2380-9
Source: PubMed


Papillary thyroid cancer (PTC) has an excellent prognosis with current treatment methods. However, the rates of locoregional recurrence after initial surgical management remain significant. This study evaluates the effect of reoperative neck dissection for locoregional recurrence of PTC after initial total thyroidectomy and radioiodine therapy on the incidence of cervical recurrence and postoperative serum thyroglobulin (Tg) levels.
This is a retrospective cohort study conducted in a single academic medical center of patients with recurrent or persistent PTC isolated to the neck after previous total thyroidectomy with or without lymph node dissection and adjuvant I(131) therapy who were treated with reoperative lymph node dissection. Outcomes including operative complications, pathologic findings, and effect of surgery on Tg levels and rates of recurrent disease were analyzed.
From 2001 to 2010, a total of 61 patients had reoperative neck dissections for recurrent cervical PTC with a complication rate of 5 %. Seventy-two percent of patients were clinically free of detectable disease, and 28 % of patients had recurrent, persistent, or newly metastatic disease detected during the follow-up period. All patients had significant decreases in Tg levels, with a median 98 % reduction in preoperative levels. However, only 21 % of patients had an undetectable stimulated Tg (<0.5 ng/mL) during the follow-up period of 15.5 months.
Reoperative treatment of recurrent or persistent PTC can be performed with low complication rates, and Tg levels greatly decrease in most patients; however, few achieve undetectable stimulated Tg.

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    • "It has been noted that benign LNs tend to show hilar vascularity or to appear avascular [26]. In contrast, metastatic nodes tend to have peripheral or mixed (both peripheral and hilar) vascularity [27-34]. In our study, color Doppler US vascularity had intermediate specificity (65,8%) but low sensitivity (49,5%). "
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    ABSTRACT: Ultrasound is considered the best diagnostic method for the detection of metastatic cervical lymph nodes (LNs) in patients with papillary thyroid carcinoma (PTC). According to current guidelines, all patients undergoing thyroidectomy for malignancy should undergo preoperative neck ultrasound of the thyroid and central and lateral neck LNs, followed by fine needle aspiration of suspicious LNs. Cervical LN involvement determenes the extent of surgery. Complete surgical resection disease at the initial operation decreases likelihood of future surgery for recurrent disease and may impact survival. We use a new technique, B-flow imaging (BFI), recently used for evaluation of thyroid nodules, to estimate the presence of BFI twinkling signs (BFI-TS), within metastatic LNs in patients with PTC. Between September 2006 and December 2012, 304 patients with known PTC were examined for preoperative sonographic evaluation with gray-scale US, color Doppler US and BFI. Only 157 with at least one metastatic LN were included in our study. All patients included underwent surgery, and the final diagnosis was based on the results of histologic examination of the resected specimens. The following LN characteristics were evaluated: LN shape, abnormal echogenicity, the absent of hilum, calcifications, cystic appearance, peripheral vascularization and the presence of BFI-TS. A total of 767 LNs were analyzed. 329 out of 767 were metastatic, according to the histopathologic findings. BFI-TS, showed 99.5% specificity and 81,5% sensitivity. We detected BFI-TS in 6 metastatic LNs that were negative to the other conventional US features. Our results indicate that the BFI-TS has a diagnostic accuracy higher than the other conventional sonographic signs. Our findings suggest that BFI can be helpful in the selection of suspicious neck LNs that should be examined at cytologic examination or open biopsy for accurate preoperative staging and individual therapy selection.
    Full-text · Article · Oct 2013 · BMC Surgery
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    • "The previous studies demonstrated that there is no additional morbidity in secondary procedures and complication rate is similar to initial surgical procedure, if performed by experienced surgeon [2, 14]. Numerous authors described the CC salvage surgery as safe and efficient oncological procedure exhibiting minimal morbidity [1, 4, 5, 10, 15]. On the other hand, Hartl and Travagli [11] underlined additional morbidity when central ND is performed as secondary procedure. "
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    ABSTRACT: The purpose of the study was to assess the feasibility of secondary neck dissections (ND) in different types of thyroid cancer (TC), to evaluate the influence of ND extent on morbidity and to describe biochemical and clinical outcomes. 51 patients previously operated for TC (33-well differentiated TC-WDTC, 15 medullary TC-MTC, 3 poorly differentiated TC-PDTC) presenting detectable nodal disease. Reoperations covered I-VII neck levels. Radical neck dissection was performed in 22 patients, selective neck dissection in 29 patients. 14 central compartment (CC), 10 mediastinal and 41 level IV excisions were performed. Postoperative complications occurred in 13 patients: 4 chyle leaks, 3 massive bleedings, 8 permanent vocal cord pareses, hypoparathyroidism in 22 patients (43.1 %), 2 patients expired in perioperative period. In WDTC: in seven patients thyroglobulin level normalized directly after ND, in ten patients in the follow-up; six patients developed distant metastases. None of the patients with MTC achieved calcitonin level <10 pg/ml; nine patients developed distant metastases. None of the patients with PDTC achieved Tg <2 mg/ml; two patients died, the third developed distant metastases. Secondary ND in TC present a challenge by means of surgical approach and possibility of complications. In MTC and PDTC the long-term results were unsatisfactory. In WDTC, the secondary ND should be performed due to strong indications. Metastases localization in levels IV, VI, VII were connected with high complication rate, but these surgeries were crucial for satisfactory oncological outcomes.
    Preview · Article · Jun 2013 · Archives of Oto-Rhino-Laryngology
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    • "In terms of treating locoregional recurrence, a formal selective neck dissection for lymph node recurrence is usually preferred but at times when certain compartments has been previously dissected, a focused neck dissection or completion compartmental neck dissection might be preferred [2]. However, despite the best surgical effort, only approximately one-third of patients would become biochemically cured of the disease (i.e., athyroglobulinemia) and therefore, the American Thyroid Association (ATA) only recommended surgical removal of clinically significant metastatic lymph nodes to prevent future locoregional complications [2] [5] [6]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Although the majority of papillary thyroid carcinoma could be successfully managed by complete surgical resection alone or resection followed by radioiodine ablation, a small proportion of patients may develop radioiodine-refractory progressive disease which is not amenable to surgery, local ablative treatment or other treatment modalities. The use of FDG-PET/CT scan for persistent/recurrent disease has improved the accuracy of restaging as well as cancer prognostication. Given that patients with RAI-refractory disease tend to do significantly worse than those with radioiodine-avid or non-progressive disease, an increasing number of phase I and II studies have been conducted to evaluate the efficacy of new molecular targeted drugs such as the tyrosine kinase inhibitors and redifferentiation drugs. The overall response rate of these drugs ranged between 0-53%, depending on whether the patients had been previously treated with these drugs, performance status and extent of disease. However, drug toxicity remains a major concern in administration of target therapies. Nevertheless, there are also ongoing phase III studies evaluating the efficacy of these new drugs. The aim of the review was to summarize and discuss the results of these targeted drugs and redifferentiation agents for patients with progressive, radioiodine-refractory papillary thyroid carcinoma.
    Full-text · Article · Dec 2012 · Journal of Thyroid Research
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