Split Sternotomy in Retrosternal Thyroid and Mediastinal Parathyroid Pathologies

Sisli Etfal Hastan Tip Bul. 2021 Sep 24;55(3):318-324. doi: 10.14744/SEMB.2021.76401. eCollection 2021.


Objectives: Although cervical incisions are usually sufficient in mediastinal located thyroid and parathyroid pathologies, sometimes mediastinal approaches are required. In recent years, less invasive methods have been used instead of median sternotomy. In this study, the adequacy of the incision and morbidity in patients who underwent split sternotomy due to retrosternal goiter (RG) and mediastinal parathyroid pathology in our clinic were investigated.

Methods: The files of patients who underwent split sternotomy in addition to cervical incision or split sternotomy extending from the sternal notch to the third intercostal space with a separate vertical incision due to retrosternal thyroid pathology or mediastinal ectopic parathyroid adenoma between January 2010 and January 2021 were retrospectively reviewed. Operative success, exposure provided by split sternotomy, and complication rates were investigated.

Results: Twelve patients who underwent split sternotomy were included in the study. The mean age of the patients was 57.25±12.62 (44-83) years. Eight (66.7%) of the patients were female and 4 (33.3%) were male. The indication for surgery was multinodular goiter (MNG) in 3 (25%) patients, recurrent MNG in 3 (25%) patients, hyperparathyroidism in 3 (25%) patients, and thyroid cancer in 3 (25%) patients. Transient hypocalcemia in 6 (50%) patients and unilateral vocal cord paralysis in 1 (8.3%) patient developed postoperatively, and all complications resolved spontaneously in an average of 3 weeks. Median sternotomy was not required for any of the patients.

Conclusion: Split sternotomy is an adequate and applicable method for the success of the surgery in RG and mediastinal parathyroid pathologies that cannot be excised with the cervical approach.

Keywords: Mediastinal parathyroid; retrosternal goiter; split sternotomy.