A lobe and isthmusectomy is our standard surgical management for the cold nodule of the thyroid. Experience indicates that the great majority of cold nodules prove benign. It is manifest that the attendant morbidity for this surgery be extremely low.
Our experience reviewing thyroid surgery for only benign disease indicates that complications are indeed uncommon. Our surgical management of the cold nodule includes resection of a lobe and isthmus with exploration and palpation of the opposite side. The nerve is routinely identified and preserved. In the past 18 months, we have experienced two minor postoperative complications in 36 consecutive cases of the lobe and isthmus resection for benign disease.