Optimal surgical extent of lateral and central neck dissection for papillary thyroid carcinoma located in one lobe with clinical lateral lymph node metastasis
1 Departments of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery, College of Medicine, Hanyang University, 222 Wangsimni-ro, Seongdong-gu, Seoul, 133-792, Korea
2 Department of Internal Medicine, College of Medicine, Hanyang University, 222 Wangsimni-ro, Seongdong-gu, Seoul, 133-792, Korea
World Journal of Surgical Oncology 2012, 10:221 doi:10.1186/1477-7819-10-221Published: 25 October 2012
The indications and extent of cervical lymph node dissection in papillary thyroid carcinoma (PTC) are still being debated. The aim of this study was to analyze the patterns of cervical lymph node metastasis in the lateral and central compartment and related factors and suggest the optimal extent of lateral and central neck dissection for PTC patients with clinical lateral lymph node metastasis.
We retrospectively analyzed 72 patients with unilateral PTC who underwent therapeutic lateral neck dissections with concomitant total thyroidectomy and central neck dissection between January 2001 and December 2009.
The 72 patients underwent 79 sides of therapeutic lateral neck dissection. The most frequent metastatic level in the ipsilateral lateral compartment was level IV (75.0%), followed by level III (69.4%), level II (56.9%) and level V (20.8%). Multiple level metastases were common (77.8%) and were correlated with tumor size (≥ 10 mm). The central compartment lymph node metastasis rate was 87.5%, including 26.4% of contralateral central compartment metastases.
In PTC patients with clinical lateral lymph node metastasis, the optimal extent of lateral and central neck dissection should include levels II, III, IV and V as well as the bilateral central compartment.