New thyroid cancer removal technique leaves minimal scarring

Thyroid cancer surgery often leaves behind a long and pronounced scar on the front of the patient's neck. However, doctors at the Medical College of Georgia have found a new technique that leaves minimal scarring.

King 5 News reports that 46-year-old La Vallia Walker became very upset when doctors told her she needed surgery for a lump in her thyroid gland, as she was afraid of how she would look.

Dr David Terris of the Medical College assured Walker that new advances in surgery would prevent her from having an unsightly scar.



The new robotic techniques have eliminated the usually large neck incision by going in through the armpit, but Dr Terris uses a different entry point, which is similar to a face-lift, the news source reports.



"We've moved that incision behind the ear because it shortens the distance we have to travel to get to the thyroid gland and reduced the amount of dissection required to get there," he said.

The so-called "face lift approach" can mean less pain, fewer complications and a scar that patients can hide under hair.

Thyroid cancer is the fastest growing cancer in the U.S., according to the American Cancer Society. 
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