Located at:

Texas ENT and Allergy
1730 Birmingham Drive
College Station, Texas 77845
979-693-6000
877-377-4ENT Toll-Free
979-693-1900 fax

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Parathyroid Surgery

Parathyroid surgery is typically performed to remove a parathyroid adenoma. Some patients may require surgery for multiple adenomas, parathyroid hyperplasia, and in rare cases parathyroid carcinoma. After the diagnosis is made, imaging studies including (sestamibi scan, ultrasound, and/or CT scan) can be helpful to localize the problematic gland.

We can use several different surgical approaches to perform these procedures.

Surgeon focused on patient in the operating room.The traditional "open" parathyroid exploration method uses a 4-6 cm horizontal incision in the lower neck to expose the thyroid, parathyroids, and surrounding structures. Fortunately with current imaging technology, this procedure rarely needs to be performed.

A "minimally invasive" approach, with or without an endoscope, can be performed in most cases to reduce the incision size to between 2-4 cm.

In selected patients, we can completely eliminate neck incisions using the da Vinci Surgical System to perform robot-assisted endoscopic parathyroid surgery.

The potential risks of parathyroid surgery include:

  • Bleeding which may compress the airway.
  • Injury to the superior or recurrent laryngeal nerves which may cause hoarseness or airway obstruction. This may be temporary or permanent.
  • Temporary or permanent hypocalcemia (low calcium levels), requiring calcium and vitamin D supplementation.
  • Persistent hypercalcemia (elevated calcium levels), requiring further surgery