Age must be a factor when considering endocrine surgery. Age itself is a risk factor for complications after thyroidectomy, specifically pulmonary, infectious, and cardiac complications. For this reason, in patients with nodular thyroid disease or thyroid microcarcinoma, length of observation must be measured against age and surgical risk. Outcomes of thyroid surgery in geriatric patients can be improved with several measures, including careful preoperative risk stratification based on comorbidities and frailty. In this population subset, it is imperative to have an earnest discussion with patients, their families, and any surrogate decision maker regarding potential outcomes of treatment versus observation.
Keywords: Endocrine surgery; Geriatric; Risk stratification; Thyroid.
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