Background: Technological advances in thyroid surgery have included various "minimally invasive" thyroidectomy techniques, both open and endoscopic. These include not only minimally invasive video-associated approaches but also variations of the transaxillary approach. More recently, a transoral technique using video assistance has been reported for thyroidectomy. Use of the robot was also recently published in a transaxillary approach to the thyroid. We hypothesized that the robot in combination with the previously described transoral technique would facilitate this novel surgical approach.
Methods: In 2 human cadavers the da Vinci robot was used to perform a transoral thyroidectomy. The dissection was performed with successful removal of the thyroid gland through the floor of the mouth.
Results: A total thyroidectomy was performed in 2 cadavers using the da Vinci robot transoral technique. The recurrent laryngeal nerve was preserved.
Conclusions: Transoral robotic-assisted thyroidectomy (TRAT) provides an attractive approach to the central compartment for thyroidectomy in a field of "minimally invasive" and "scarless" techniques.
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