Background: Different minimally invasive techniques of parathyroidectomy have been described. We performed a retrospective study to evaluate the indications and results of video-assisted parathyroidectomy by lateral approach (VAPLA) in the management of our patients with primary hyperparathyroidism (PHPT).
Methods: From December 1997 to December 2000, we operated on 293 patients with PHPT. VAPLA was proposed for patients with sporadic PHPT in whom a single adenoma was localized by means of sonography or sestamibi scanning, or both. VAPLA was performed on the anterior border of the sternocleidomastoid muscle. A quick parathormone (PTH) assay was used during the surgical procedures.
Results: Of the 293 patients, 127 (43.3%) were not eligible for VAPLA: ipsilateral previous neck surgery (28 cases), associated nodular goiter (59 cases), suspicion of multiglandular disease (15 cases), no preoperative localization (17 cases), and miscellaneous causes (8 cases). VAPLA was performed in 166 patients (56.7%). Conversion to conventional parathyroidectomy was required in 26 patients (15.6%). Morbidity included 2 local hematomas, 1 definitive recurrent nerve palsy, and 4 capsular fractures. All of the 166 patients were normocalcemic, with follow-up ranging from 3 to 33 months.
Conclusions: VAPLA is safe and effective. It should be reserved for patients with sporadic PHPT, with a small single adenoma clearly localized preoperatively.