One theoretical limit of video-assisted thyroidectomy (VAT) was the supposed necessity of general anesthesia. Herein we describe a technique for VAT performed under locoregional anesthesia. Eligibility criteria were small thyroid nodules (<2 cm) in small or normal thyroid glands (thyroid volume < or =20 mL), no previous neck surgery or irradiation, and patient motivation for local anesthesia. VAT using locoregional anesthesia was performed under a superficial cervical block. During the procedure, the patients were completely awake and able to speak with members of the surgical team. Intraoperative and postoperative pain, as evaluated by a visual analogue scale, was usually negligible. No complications occurred. Mean postoperative stay was 26 hours. All of the patients were completely satisfied with the cosmetic result, the procedure, and the surgical outcome. VAT is also feasible and safe under local anesthesia. We are optimistic about the future of this approach, which opens a new frontier for minimally invasive procedures in thyroid surgery.
- Local Anesthesia
- Video-assisted thyroidectomy