2017 – Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist undergoes Robotic-Assisted BABA by Dr Hyun Suh at Mount Sinai

Year of procedure/evaluation: Tanya

Review for Dr. Hyunsuk Suh and the Thyroid Program I am writing this testimony in great appreciation of my wonderful experience and to help young women and men AVOID traditional Thyroid surgeries that force you to be admitted to the hospital with drains, a lot of pain, frequent blood draws and not to mention a neck scar for the rest of your life and you will most probably be taking synthroid medication for the rest of your life because you removed all natural hormonal functions your Thyroid performs. I am a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist that required Thyroid surgery for a large goiter on the right side of my Thyroid gland. I heard of the transaxillary approach and was aware of possible brachial plexus injuries so not totally being sold, I continued my research stumbling upon Dr. Suh and a minimally invasive BABA (Bilateral Axillo-Breast Approach). I quickly made the appointment with the Thyroid Program at Mount Sinai. My initial visit was very pleasant. The staff was very attentive and made me feel very comfortable. Although I am well aware of robotic procedures and preform them regularly, I still had some butterflies. Dr. Suh was very humble and made sure I understood what to expect from incisions to the post-operative recovery period. Day of surgery: I was preopped and seen by the surgery team and Dr. Cipolla (anesthesiologist) who was very nice and had a calm demeanor that translated throughout my perioperative experience. My surgery lasted 5hrs (not your typical operative time), I have very little body fat, which was more challenging for Dr. Suh and he took his time ensuring safety and accuracy. Dr. Suh performed a robotic assisted right-sided Thyroidectomy. I maintained the left side of my Thyroid gland thereby maintaining natural Thyroid function precluding me from taking Synthroid for the rest of my life. Post Operative Period: I woke up in the recovery room NO DRAINS, NO NECK INCISION just in a sports bra with chest and neck pressure dressings. I had a sore throat partially from the endotracheal tube used for General anesthesia. I stayed a couple of hours. Dr. Suh came to check on me looked at my chest and cleared me to go home the same day. That night I had to sleep on my back with 2 pillows. I felt a little sore. I anticipated a great deal of pain the next morning so I preemptively set my alarm clock every 4hr to take the prescribed pain medication. I intermittently also took Motrin every 6hr. I didn’t sleep much but I really wanted to stay in front of the pain instead of playing catch up. Decreasing pain postoperatively allows for faster recovery. There are many benefits from deep breathing and ROM exercises that you MUST perform. Make sure you get an Incentive Spirometer when you’re discharged. You will experience a fair share of atelectasis from general anesthesia the Incentive spirometer will help re-inflate the small areas in your lungs. Post Operative day 1: I continued my pain meds as above. I was able to perform ROM exercises and rested most of the day. My sore throat continued along with soreness from required tunneling for procedure. I took Cepacol (lozenges) and had mainly broth to eat if I ate anything hard it would further irritate my throat. Post Operative day 2: I continued pain meds as above. I was able to finally shower. I allowed warm water to run over incisional areas and do some neck movements (side to side and up and down). After I showered I stuffed my sports bra with the dressings, the neck pressure dressings I discarded. My appetite improved I was able to tolerate soft food. I began over the counter stool softener because I was afraid the pain medication would cause constipation. Postoperative day 3: I was able to leave my house with minimal pain and very little soreness. My sore throat had subsided. I continued the Motrin when I felt my chest getting tight. Postoperative day 4: I was able to drive and resumed my normal sleeping position. I had very little pain I did have some numbness over my chest. I was back cooking and eating what I wanted. Postoperative follow up visit went very well. I was cleared to go back to work 9 days after surgery being mindful that I did have surgery. I know this testimony is lengthy but I truly wanted to give the reader a full scope of my perioperative experience. I highly recommend Dr. Suh and The Mount Sinai Thyroid Program not only is he the only one performing this cosmetic Thyroid surgery in the U.S. he is a humble surgeon and an amazing caring person.