[MOL] Outpatient Procedure Safely Removes Parathyroid Tumors.... 
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[MOL] Outpatient Procedure Safely Removes Parathyroid Tumors....
December 22, 1999
Procedure Safely Removes Parathyroid Tumors
BALTIMORE, MD—Minimally invasive outpatient surgery to remove tumors of
the parathyroid glands is safe for most patients and far more cost-effective
than traditional open surgery, a Johns Hopkins study shows. The parathyroid
glands, located in the neck behind the thyroid, control calcium and bone
metabolism. When the glands are overactive, usually because of benign tumors,
patients can develop osteoporosis, peptic ulcers, or kidney stones. About
100,000 new cases of hyperparathyroidism occur each year, and women are more
susceptible. Surgery is the favored treatment. Surgeon Robert Udelsman, M.D.,
notes that patients treated with minimally invasive surgery had a significantly
shorter hospital length-of -stay than those treated with the traditional
surgical procedure (one day or less vs. up to two days), and the cost was about
half that of those receiving the more invasive treatment. Patients receiving the
minimally invasive procedure also had a 100 percent cure rate and zero deaths,
compared to a 97 percent cure rate and two percent death rate among those
undergoing the open surgical procedure.
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