Journal of the Endocrine Society Journal Article

Ten Year Outcomes of Laser Ablation

July 05, 2021
 

Giovanni Gambelunghe, Elisa Stefanetti, Nicola Avenia, Pierpaolo De Feo
Journal of the Endocrine Society, Volume 5, Issue 7, July 2021, bvab081
https://doi.org/10.1210/jendso/bvab081

Abstract

Context

Percutaneous, ultrasound-guided laser ablation is effective in nodular thyroid disease.

Objective

The aim of this study was to evaluate the long-term (10-year) efficacy and safety of laser ablation in the treatment of benign thyroid nodules.

Methods

From 2009 to 2010, 171 patients received a single session of laser ablation. Evaluation of nodule volume was performed before treatment, at 6 months, and every year.

Results

Technique efficacy was achieved in 92% of patients at 1 year. Median nodule volume significantly decreased from 16.7 mL (range, 11.0-97.0 mL) at baseline to 5.0 mL (range, 4.1-32.0 mL) at 1 year, a volume reduction ratio (VRR) of 68%. The benefit of the treatment was durable (P < 0.001 vs baseline at all timepoints), with a VRR of 59% after 10 years. No cases of nodule regrowth > 50% were observed at 1 year, although such cases did occur after 4 years (n = 3; 1.7% of the overall cohort) and 7 years (n = 8; 4.7%). There were no further cases of regrowth beyond 7 years. When patients were stratified according to baseline nodule volume (< 15 mL, 15-25 mL, or > 25 mL), durable results were observed across all 3 categories, with the largest, most prolonged effect observed in patients with nodules < 15 mL. Treatment was well tolerated, with only minor, transient complications of fever and local pain, and 98% of patients willing to recommend the treatment.

Conclusion

Percutaneous, ultrasound-guided laser ablation of benign thyroid nodules provides long-term benefits and the treatment is well tolerated.

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