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Published Online: 14 December 2018

Active Surveillance of Low-Risk Papillary Thyroid Microcarcinoma: A Multi-Center Cohort Study in Korea

Publication: Thyroid
Volume 28, Issue Number 12

Abstract

Background: Active surveillance has been introduced as a management option for low-risk papillary thyroid microcarcinoma (PTMC) due to its mostly indolent course.
Methods: This was a multicenter study of 370 PTMC patients who underwent active surveillance more than one year. The changes in volume and maximum diameter between initial and last ultrasonography were evaluated to identify the natural course of PTMC during active surveillance.
Results: Patients' age at diagnosis was 51 ± 12 years, and 110 (30%) patients were <45 years of age. The initial maximum diameter and volume of PTMCs were 5.9 ± 1.7 mm and 81.0 ± 77.7 mm3, respectively. During the median 32.5 months of follow-up, 86 (23.2%) patients were found to have an increase in tumor volume, and 13 (3.5%) patients showed an increase in the maximal diameter of the tumor. The cumulative incidence of volume increase gradually rose with time (6.9%, 17.3%, 28.2%, and 36.2% after two, three, four, and five years, respectively). The risk of volume increase in patients <45 years of age was twice as high as in older patients (p = 0.002). There was no significant difference in tumor size change according to sex, levothyroxine treatment, or presence of Hashimoto's thyroiditis. During the period, 58 (15.7%) patients underwent delayed thyroid surgery due to anxiety (37.9%), tumor size increase (32.8%), or appearance of cervical lymph node metastasis (8.6%). Lymph node metastasis was found in 29.3% of patients on pathological examination.
Conclusions: A significant number of PTMCs grow during active surveillance, and tumor volume change is a more sensitive means of evaluating tumor growth. Active surveillance can be carefully applied for selected patients. Although it is not contraindicated, it should be applied more cautiously for younger patients.

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cover image Thyroid®
Thyroid
Volume 28Issue Number 12December 2018
Pages: 1587 - 1594
PubMed: 30226447

History

Published online: 14 December 2018
Published in print: December 2018
Published ahead of print: 17 October 2018
Published ahead of production: 18 September 2018

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Hye-Seon Oh*
Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Department of Internal Medicine, Asan Medical Center, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Seoul, Republic of Korea.
Jeonghoon Ha*
Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Department of Internal Medicine, Seoul St. Mary's Hospital, College of Medicine, The Catholic University of Korea, Seoul, Republic of Korea.
Hye In Kim
Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Department of Medicine, Thyroid Center, Samsung Medical Center, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul, Republic of Korea.
Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Department of Medicine, Samsung Changwon Hospital, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Changwon, Republic of Korea.
Tae Hyuk Kim
Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Department of Medicine, Thyroid Center, Samsung Medical Center, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul, Republic of Korea.
Won Gu Kim
Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Department of Internal Medicine, Asan Medical Center, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Seoul, Republic of Korea.
Dong-Jun Lim
Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Department of Internal Medicine, Seoul St. Mary's Hospital, College of Medicine, The Catholic University of Korea, Seoul, Republic of Korea.
Tae Yong Kim
Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Department of Internal Medicine, Asan Medical Center, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Seoul, Republic of Korea.
Sun Wook Kim
Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Department of Medicine, Thyroid Center, Samsung Medical Center, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul, Republic of Korea.
Won Bae Kim
Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Department of Internal Medicine, Asan Medical Center, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Seoul, Republic of Korea.
Young Kee Shong
Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Department of Internal Medicine, Asan Medical Center, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Seoul, Republic of Korea.
Jae Hoon Chung [email protected]
Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Department of Medicine, Thyroid Center, Samsung Medical Center, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul, Republic of Korea.
Jung Hwan Baek [email protected]
Department of Radiology, Asan Medical Center, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Seoul, Republic of Korea.

Notes

*
These two authors contributed equally to this work.
Address correspondence to: Jung Hwan Baek, MD, PhD, Division of Radiology, Asan Medical Center, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, 88, Olympic-ro 43-gil, Songpa-gu, Seoul, 05505, Republic of Korea [email protected]
Jae Hoon Chung, MD, PhD, Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Department of Medicine, Thyroid Center, Samsung Medical Center, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, 81, Irwon-ro, Gangnam-gu, Seoul 06351, Republic of Korea [email protected]

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