Saving inpatient beds: are day-case total parathyroidectomies possible and safe? (2023)

Type of publication:Conference abstract

Author(s):*Sultana E.; *McDonald S.; Al-Saadi N.; Chang J.; *Sandhu K.; *Houghton A.

Citation:British Journal of Surgery. Conference: Annual Congress of the Association of Surgeons of Great Britain and Ireland. Harrogate United Kingdom. 110(Supplement 6) (pp vi12), 2023.

Abstract:Introduction: Total parathyroidectomy on patients with hyperparathyroidism traditionally required an inpatient hospital stay to monitor patients for postoperative hypocalcaemia. Our centre developed a safe protocol in 2015 which enables total parathyroidectomies to be carried out as a day-case procedure. This protocol, developed in conjunction with the renal physicians, involves giving the patient oral alfacalcidol preoperatively for 5 days and close monitoring of the calcium levels postoperatively to permit safe same day discharge. Method(s): A single centre retrospective study was carried out on all patients who underwent a total parathyroidectomy for hyperparathyroidism between 2005 and 2022. A comparison study was done before and after the protocol was introduced in 2015. Data were collected regarding the patient comorbidities, peri-operative calcium level, post-operative calcium, potassium and parathyroid levels, length of hospital stay, operative procedure details, hospital readmission, and 30-day morbidity. Result(s): 57 patients underwent total parathyroidectomy during the study period (22 before protocol and 35 after the protocol). After introduction of the protocol, 40% of patients were discharged on the same day, compared to only 4.54% previously. The duration of inpatient hospital stay was reduced from 0-13 days to 0-3 days. Reasons for prolonged hospital stay in the remaining patients included refractory hyperkalaemia requiring dialysis, complications secondary to anaesthesia, as well as hypocalcaemia in a few cases. No patient required readmission during the 30-day post-operative period. Conclusion(s): Day-case surgery for total parathyroidectomy can be achieved safely in patients with a preoperative regimen of alfacalcidol and close monitoring of calcium levels post-operatively, emulating a virtual ward round.

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