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Old 07-28-2009, 12:08 PM   #1
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kcf71 HB User
Has anyone had surgery for a Substernal Thyroid?

I can find information on what it's about, but I'd like input from people who have had the surgery and how it went, etc. since I'm facing it sometime in August. Thank you

 
Old 07-28-2009, 04:50 PM   #2
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Re: Has anyone had surgery for a Substernal Thyroid?

Quote:
Originally Posted by kcf71 View Post
I can find information on what it's about, but I'd like input from people who have had the surgery and how it went, etc. since I'm facing it sometime in August. Thank you
I had a TT done about 3 years ago to remove my thyroid which was growing downward (substernally). I had a very large goiter which had also moved my trachea to the other side. My surgery lasted about 2 1/2 hrs. I woke up in the recovery room and then was moved to my own room. I had a drainage tube in my throat due which I didn't feel at all. I was allowed to suck on ice chips almost immediately (I guess that helps your throat). I had an IV in my arm which was removed shortly. My throat hurt a bit and my neck was sore but otherwise felt ok. I do remember that I couldn't wait to eat because I was starving..... wasn't able to eat for 12 hrs prior to surgery. I had some boots on my feet to prevent any risk of clots since I was immobile - which felt like a massage and which I enjoyed. I was also able to use the bathroom on my own.
I only stayed in the hospital one night because my calcium level was fine and the doctor was able to release me. He wanted to leave the drainage tube in my throat and he would take it out when I returned to his office for a follow-up visit. However, I convinced him that I didn't want to have this tube in my throat for a week (didn't want to have to take care of it) so he took it out - pinched a little coming out but not terrible. I was also given a prescription for pain pills which I didn't need. Managed fine with only Tylenol. The only problem I did have was that it was difficult to sleep in my bed since I was unable to lay down low enough. I solved that problem by spending the next 2 nights on the couch which was very comfortable.
I have never had surgery in my life and was very nervous but it really wasn't that bad. Had very little pain and mostly a slight sore throat and found it difficult to move my head from side to side - which only lasted a few days. I didn't drive for a week until I felt I was able to freely move my neck.
If you have any other questions, please feel free to ask. This board was a big help to me when I was going through it... Wishing you the best.

Last edited by countrycarole; 07-28-2009 at 04:53 PM.

 
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Old 07-30-2009, 01:24 PM   #3
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Re: Has anyone had surgery for a Substernal Thyroid?

Hi Carole,

Thank you for your reply. I'm glad your surgery went well and you had little difficulty. Can I ask what kind of symptoms you experienced with the substernal thyroid? I have a lump in my throat, especially after eating, a heavy, weighted feeling in my chest sometimes and I get short of breath when I climb just a simple flight of stairs.

 
Old 08-04-2009, 10:41 AM   #4
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Re: Has anyone had surgery for a Substernal Thyroid?

Met with the new surgeon for my 2nd thyroid surgery: a "substernal thyroid resection". I have a rather large mass growing downward that needs to be removed. It's about 2 inches in size--large on the scale they use--He assumes it is residual thyroid, however, there is the slight possibility of it being a cancerous or benign mass from the "original" thyroid tissue.

The surgeon is hoping he can go in through the old incision and remove the mass in that manner. If not, a follow up surgery will need to be done, either through an incision under my arm near the chest, or, by "opening" aka breaking the sternum, the latter of which would really suck Surgery is tentatively scheduled for Aug. 21st. I hope to wake up from it hearing ng they were able to remove the mass but atleast he alerted me to the other possibilities. Again, I was very please with my visit with him and am less nervous about being in a different hospital/healthcare system. So, my battle isn't entirely over but I'm just look forward to getting through it and back to feeling myself again! The hypothyroid symptoms are the worst!

 
Old 08-05-2009, 08:30 AM   #5
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countrycarole HB User
Re: Has anyone had surgery for a Substernal Thyroid?

Hi
I also had a lump in my throat and found it was increasingly difficult to eat because I felt the food was stuck in my throat. I also had to swallow hard to just drink liquids. It was obvious from just looking at my neck (especially from the side) that my neck was larger than normal on the right side. Also I was unable to wear any choker necklaces because they just didn't fit.... Aside from that I really didn't experience any other symptoms. The main one, as I mentioned, was the increasing size of my neck... it was definitely growing. Good luck with your surgery and I know you will do fine. I am so glad that I had the TT done - I am now feeling great and do not have any problems with taking Synthroid. Please feel free to ask any questions that you might have.

 
Old 08-05-2009, 08:46 AM   #6
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kcf71 HB User
Re: Has anyone had surgery for a Substernal Thyroid?

Quote:
Originally Posted by countrycarole View Post
Hi
I am so glad that I had the TT done - I am now feeling great and do not have any problems with taking Synthroid. Please feel free to ask any questions that you might have.
Thank you Were your TSH and Tg levels off too?

 
Old 08-05-2009, 07:26 PM   #7
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countrycarole HB User
Re: Has anyone had surgery for a Substernal Thyroid?

Yes they were.

 
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