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Thyroidectomy: Care and Attention of A Surgical Wound

Placement of the Neck Incision

The surgical incision is going to be situated on the front of the neck. It can be frequently possible for the operating surgeon to place the incision within the existing skin wrinkle. When the thyroidectomy scar heals, it will eventually appear to be a part of the skin crease and thus is less visible.


The size of the incision scar is largely dependent on how big the thyroid swelling was and
precisely how considerable a surgical treatment is required for its removal. Generally speaking, the majority of incisions can be between 1.5 to 3.5 inches long.

Wound Dressing and Stitches (Sutures) Care

There may be a gauze pressure dressing around the neck. The doctor will certainly give instructions on when to remove it. Patient may have stitches on the incision which will need to be removed in 5-7 days, or they may have dissolvable stitches which do not necessitate removal. If the incision has actually been closed with dissolvable stitches, the patient will likely have got either skin glue or
paper tapes (Steri-strips) covering the incision.

Surgical Drain


You may have a drain within your wound incision, which can usually be taken out right after 24 hours. Head and neck surgical procedures are sometime associated with considerable postoperative issues, for instance hematoma & seroma. Surgeons often employ closed drainage systems to minimize these complications.

Surgical Scar

Scars usually take about 12–18 months to fully mature. During that period, they go through a remodeling process. A lot of scarring that are unattractive in the first few months may gradually improve over the course of a year. Within the first few months, they may be pinkish and also raised but will then soften, flatten and lighten across the subsequent 9–10 months.


Scar tissue is not really as strong as normal skin, and therefore, based upon the location, direction of tension, it may broaden over time, no matter how carefully the wound was closed. Some scars may possibly remain permanently thick (hypertrophic) or develop into an excessive amount of scar tissue known as keloid, despite all the best efforts to reduce the scarring.

Surgical Scar: Treatment Options

There are many ways to deal with a surgical scar: the most important things to keep in mind are: time, direct sun exposure and massage/rub

Time: Since scars naturally improve over 12–18 months

Sun exposure: It is crucial that the scars always be protected from exposure to direct sun light. Scars which turn out to be sunburned will remain red and unsightly for a long period, and even permanently. It is crucial to use sun screen lotion on all scars, especially new, immature scars.


Massage therapy: Gentle massage therapy can help flatten the scar. You may use Vitamin E essential oil, cocoa butter, skin cream products to lubricate the skin throughout massage. However, probably none of these skin lotions have been proven to improve scar issues. It is much more likely that the pressure coming from the massage itself helps to flatten the scar. Massage the scar every day for a minimum of 2 months.


In general, massage therapy can start about fourteen days right after operation. By this time, any stitches ought to have been taken out as well as any remaining dressing.


Steroid Injections: Triamcinolone is a long-acting injectable local steroid that works in order to soften and shrink hypertrophic or keloid scarring. It could take at least one month with regard to the steroid treatment to be completely assimilated, therefore injections are usually usually spaced

4–6 weeks apart. A series of injections may well be needed for best outcomes.

Published on 1 June 2021
Medically reviews & updated on 3 June 2021
By Dr Cheong Jack Pein

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