Randle RW, Bates MF, Long KL, Pitt SC, Schneider DF, Sippel RS
Potassium iodide (KI) is often prescribed prior to thyroidectomy for Graves’ disease, but the effect of KI on the ease and safety of thyroidectomy for Graves’ is largely unknown.
We conducted a prospective cohort study of patients with Graves’ disease undergoing thyroidectomy. For the first 8-months no patients received KI; for the next 8-months, KI was added to the pre-operative protocol for all patients. Outcomes included operative difficulty (based on the Thyroidectomy Difficulty Scale) and complications.
A total of 31 patients in the no-KI group and 28 in the KI group were included. According to the Thyroidectomy Difficulty Scale, gland vascularity decreased in the KI group (mean score 2.6 vs. 3.3, p=0.04), but there were no significant differences in thyroid friability, fibrosis, size, or overall difficulty (p=NS for all). Despite similar operative difficulty, patients prescribed KI were less likely to experience transient hypoparathyroidism (7.1% vs. 25.9%, p=0.018) and transient hoarseness (0% vs. 16.1%, p=0.009) compared with the no-KI group.
KI administration decreases gland vascularity but does not change the overall difficulty of thyroidectomy. However, KI was associated with less transient hypoparathyroidism and transient hoarseness, suggesting that KI improves the safety of thyroidectomy for Graves’ disease.
University of Wisconsin, USA
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