Preoperative parathyroid localization does not improve surgical outcomes for patients with primary hyperparathyroidism

Academic Article


  • Background: Most patients with primary hyperparathyroidism undergo localization prior to operation with variable success. Therefore, in this study we investigated the safety of parathyroidectomy without imaging. Methods: A prospective database of 2057 surgical patients with primary hyperparathyroidism from 2001 to 2019 was reviewed. Patients were categorized by use of preoperative imaging (ultrasound, sestamibi, CT scan), pathology, and cure. Results: 1879 (91%) patients underwent preoperative imaging. CT scan was the most sensitive study (92%), though specificity was only 64%. Patients with imaging were older, had higher pre- and postoperative calcium, more likely to undergo unilateral exploration and have an adenoma (p < 0.001–0.038). No differences were seen in nerve injury (<1%), postoperative hypocalcemia (<1%), or cure rate. Conclusions: While localization may lead to minimally-invasive operations, we observed no differences in postoperative complications or cure rates in the hands of an experienced surgeon. Therefore, preoperative parathyroid localization does not improve outcomes for hyperparathyroidism and can be ordered sparingly.
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Fazendin JM; Lindeman B; Chen H
  • Start Page

  • 533
  • End Page

  • 535
  • Volume

  • 220
  • Issue

  • 3