9 doctors weighed in:

How long is the recovery for a subtotal thyroidectomy? Will I need replacement medication?

9 doctors weighed in
Dr. Mike Bowman
ENT - Head & Neck Surgery
6 doctors agree

In brief: 1 week or so

Most of my patients are back to work in ~1 week, using narcotic pain meds for only 3-4 days on average.
Full activity can be resumed in 2 weeks. Roughly 15% of people will require thyroid supplementation after partial thyroidectomy. Although there is plenty of debate, i recommend thyroid lobectomy over subtotal thyroidectomy for reasons i don't have room to discuss. Good luck!

In brief: 1 week or so

Most of my patients are back to work in ~1 week, using narcotic pain meds for only 3-4 days on average.
Full activity can be resumed in 2 weeks. Roughly 15% of people will require thyroid supplementation after partial thyroidectomy. Although there is plenty of debate, i recommend thyroid lobectomy over subtotal thyroidectomy for reasons i don't have room to discuss. Good luck!
Dr. Mike Bowman
Dr. Mike Bowman
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1 comment
Dr. Richard Orr
I agree with Dr. Bowman. Experienced surgeons have moved away from subtotal thyroidectomy. We recommend removing the entire lobe (if only one side is involved) or removing the entire thyroid if appropriate.
Dr. John Chastain
ENT - Head & Neck Surgery
2 doctors agree

In brief: About a week.

Recovery varies. I tell my patients to take a week off.
Some folks feel pretty good after 3-4 days; others take 7-10 (or more). Bumps in the road are possible but hard to predict- low calcium, throat issues... Expect to be on calcium pills temporarily and thyroid replacement (synthroid) indefinitely.

In brief: About a week.

Recovery varies. I tell my patients to take a week off.
Some folks feel pretty good after 3-4 days; others take 7-10 (or more). Bumps in the road are possible but hard to predict- low calcium, throat issues... Expect to be on calcium pills temporarily and thyroid replacement (synthroid) indefinitely.
Dr. John Chastain
Dr. John Chastain
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