Randomized controlled trial on single dose steroid before thyroidectomy for benign disease to improve postoperative nausea, pain, and vocal function.


Journal Article

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the effects of a single preoperative dose of steroid on thyroidectomy outcomes. BACKGROUND: Nausea, pain, and voice alteration frequently occur after thyroidectomy. Because steroids effectively reduce nausea and inflammation, a preoperative administration of steroids could improve these thyroidectomy outcomes. METHODS: Seventy-two patients (men = 20, women = 52) undergoing thyroidectomy for benign disease were included in this randomized, controlled, 2 armed (group D: 8 mg dexamethasone, n = 37; group C: 0.9% NaCl, n = 35), double-blinded study (clinical trial number NCT00619086). Anesthesia, surgical procedures, antiemetics, and analgesic treatments were standardized. Nausea (0-3), pain (visual analog scale), antiemetic and analgesic requirements, and digital voice recording were documented before and 4, 8, 16, 24, 36, and 48 hours after surgery. Patients were followed-up 30 days after hospital discharge. RESULTS: Baseline characteristics were similar among the 2 treatment groups. Nausea was pronounced in the first 16 hours postoperatively (scores were <0.3 and 0.8-1.0 for group D and C, respectively (P = 0.005)), and was significantly lower in group D compared with group C during the observation period (P = 0.001). Pain diminished within 48 hours after surgery (visual analog scale 20 and 35 in group D and C, respectively (P = 0.009)). Antiemetic and analgesic requirements were also significantly diminished. Changes in voice mean frequency were less prominent in the dexamethasone group compared with the placebo group (P = 0.015). No steroid-related complications occurred. CONCLUSION: A preoperative single dose of steroid significantly reduced nausea, vomiting, and pain, and improved postoperative voice function within the first 48 hours (most pronounced within 16 hours) after thyroid resection; this strategy should be routinely applied in thyroidectomies.

Full Text

Cited Authors

  • Worni, M; Schudel, HH; Seifert, E; Inglin, R; Hagemann, M; Vorburger, SA; Candinas, D

Published Date

  • December 2008

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 248 / 6

Start / End Page

  • 1060 - 1066

PubMed ID

  • 19092351

Pubmed Central ID

  • 19092351

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1528-1140

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0003-4932

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1097/sla.0b013e31818c709a


  • eng