Dubai: In a rare surgery lasting five hours, doctors excised a thyroid gland weighing 550 gms from the neck of a 46-year-old expatriate.
This butterfly-shaped gland in our throat normally weighs about 15-25 gm.
“This is perhaps the largest tumour I have seen on a thyroid gland,” Dr Amit Goel, specialist ENT surgeon from Aster Mankhool Hospital, said adding, “although people in UAE do suffer from thyroid related conditions, such as hyper or hypo thyroidism, such a large goitre is unheard of here”.
“Clinical examination of the patient indicated that his colloid goitre had grown into a mass measuring 18 x 16cm involving most of the neck down to the anterior border,” Dr Goel said.
“Excision of the entire gland was challenging as the mass growing on it was affecting the vital carotid artery and internal jugular vein as also compressing the trachea,” said Dr Rahul Tugnait, specialist in General Surgery at the hospital. “The trachea is made of soft cartilage and there was danger of slicing through it.” Any mistake could rupture either the carotid artery or jugular vein or cause respiratory distress to the patient.
“We had to preserve the para thyroid gland and the laryngeal nerves and had to plan the surgery very well,” added Dr Goel.
The patient, Sajid Hussain, the Pakistani national who works as blue collar worker is thrilled with the results. “I have got back my normal life. The tumour was growing slow for many years and I felt helpless. Suddenly, in the last six months it grew very fast and I began feeling very uncomfortable. I could not swallow or breathe properly and the weight on my neck was tiring me out, besides causing strain to the back of the neck as I had to tilt my head in a particular angle to hold it straight.”
Hussain says after the surgery his life has returned to normal and he is grateful to the doctors for their efficient work and to the Almighty that the tumour turned out to be benign.
The Thyroid is an endocrine or ductless gland situated at the base of our neck and is shaped like a butterfly secretes hormones including thyroxine (T4) and triiodothyronine (T3) and calcitron that regulate the body’s metabolism and growth.
Under active thyroid glands result in hypothyroidism that leads to sluggish metabolism, depression and other health complications.
Around 5 per cent of the population in the UAE suffer from thyroid disease, according to statistics from the 10th Annual Middle East Otolaryngology Conference and Exhibition.