Thyroid RFA 101: Quality of Life both physically and mentally Improved after RFA Treatment of Large Benign Thyroid Nodules.
We studied the impact of radiofrequency ablation (RFA) on health-related quality of life (HRQL) in patients with benign thyroid nodules (TN) in a 2-year follow-up.
Forty patients (35 women and 5 men; age, 54.9 ± 14.3 years) with cold thyroid solitary nodules or a dominant nodule within a normofunctioning multi-nodular goiter (volume range, 6.5 to 90.0 mL) underwent RFA of thyroid nodular tissue under ultrasound real-time assistance.
Data are mean and standard deviation. Energy delivered was 37,154 ± 18,092 joules, with an output power of 37.4 ± 8.8 watts. Two years after RFA, nodule volume decreased from 30.0 ± 18.2 mL to 7.9 ± 9.8 mL (-80.1 ± 16.1% of initial volume; P<.0001). Thyroid-stimulating hormone, free triiodothyronine, and free thyroxine levels remained stable. Symptom score measured on a 0- to 10-cm visual analogue scale (VAS) declined from 5.6 ± 3.1 cm to 1.9 ± 1.3 cm (P<.0001). Cosmetic score (VAS 0-10 cm) declined from 5.7 ± 3.2 cm to 1.9 ± 1.5 cm (P<.0001). Two patients became anti-thyroglobulin antibody-positive. Physical Component Summary (PCS)-12 improved from 50.4 ± 8.9 to 54.5 ± 5.3, and the Mental Component Summary (MCS)-12 improved from 36.0 ± 13.3 to 50.3 ± 6.3 (P<.0001 for both score changes).
Our 2-year follow-up study confirms that RFA of benign TNs is effective in reducing nodular volume and compressive and cosmetic symptoms, without causing thyroid dysfunction or life-threatening complications. Our data indicate that the achievement of these secondary endpoints is associated with HRQL improvement, measured both as PCS and MCS.
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