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Electrophysiologic laryngeal nerve monitoring in high-risk thyroid surgery

| Reprints
June 1, 2005
by Phillip Song, MD; Larry Shemen, MD, FRCS, FACS
We recently began performing intraoperative electrophysiologic monitoring of the recurrent laryngeal nerve and the external branch of the superior laryngeal nerve during high-risk thyroidectomies. Neuromonitoring can detect stimulation of these nerves and thereby prevent a mechanical or thermal injury that can result in neurapraxia or axonotmesis. Monitoring is also useful during dissection in an already operated-on field, when performing thyroidectomy on patients who depend on their voice for their livelihood, and when removing a large goiter or mediastinal mass.

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