How Long Does Thyroid Gland Removal Surgery Usually Take?


Quick Answer

Thyroid gland removal surgery generally lasts two to three hours, according to Johns Hopkins Medicine. During the surgery, the surgeon makes a 3- to 4-inch incision in the neck, locates the thyroid, removes it, and stitches the area closed. The patient recuperates for several additional hours in the recovery room.

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Full Answer

Following surgery, most patients stay just one night in the hospital for close monitoring, notes Johns Hopkins Medicine. The recovery period runs from one to two weeks, and the patient cannot drive for one week. Following removal of the thyroid, the patient begins a regimen of thyroid hormone replacement therapy that lasts for life.

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