This project investigates the effect of laser treatment on benign thyroid nodules. The common treatment is surgery.
By analyzing specific clinical parameters in patient journals, we seek to investigate which patients will benefit more from laser treatment. Thereby optimize the visitation to either laser therapy og surgery.
Laser treatment is used as an alternative to surgical intervention of benign nodules in thyroid gland. Nodules can be cystic, solid or mixed. The treatment is based on an ultrasound-guided procedure, where the nodule is located and a fiber is placed in the cystic part of the nodule. Through the fiber, the nodule is irradiated with laser This causes necrosis, fibrosis, as well as shrinkage of the nodule. Laser treatment takes place under local anesthesia and the procedure is monitored with ultrasound.
The purpose of the treatment is to reduce pressure symptoms.
The procedure is currently performed in an outpatient clinic at Odense University Hospital (OUH) under the auspices of endocrinology in close collaboration with the ear, nose and throat surgery department. Currently, OUH is the only place in Denmark that offers this treatment.
Approx. 200 patients are assessed annually for laser treatment, and approx. 50 people are treated annually. Most patients are offered 1-3 treatments, depending on the size of the nodule and the effect of the treatment. The waiting time for treatment is currently long, up to 16 weeks.
In Denmark, the overall prevalence of thyroid nodules> 1 cm is 17.3%, which makes nodules in the thyroid gland common. Today, the primary treatment is surgical intervention or radioactive iodine.
At OUH, laser treatment is used as an alternative to surgery in patients with benign thyroid nodules.
Previous studies have shown that laser treatment of benign nodules in the thyroid gland has had a good effect on the reduction in nodule volume and that it is clinically relevant as an alternative to surgery in selected patients. At the same time, side effects are limited and procedures are considered minimally invasive.