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Around 5% of patients in the Middle East have Thyroid Disease

Dubai, UAE: The primary reasons for thyroid surgery are cancers of the thyroid, thyroid masses or very large thyroid glands (goitres). Thyroid surgery is used to treat thyroid nodules, thyroid cancer, and hyperthyroidism. During this procedure, part or all of the thyroid gland is removed. The thyroid gland is a butterfly-shaped gland located at the front of the neck. During surgery, an incision is made in the skin. The muscle and other tissues are pulled aside to expose the thyroid gland.

Dr Michael Benninger, Chairman, Head and Neck Institute at the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio, USA will be discussing the topic of ‘Improving Voice Outcomes after Thyroid Surgery’ at the 10th Annual Middle East Otolaryngology Conference & Exhibition, organised by Informa Life Sciences Exhibitions. The event will take place in Madinat Jumeirah Arena in Dubai, UAE on 21-23 April 2013 and is expected to attract more than 700 regional healthcare professionals from the ENT field.

“Rough estimates of prevalence rates of thyroid disorders in the Middle East indicate that about 5% of patients in the Middle East have thyroid disease. We receive large numbers of Middle Eastern patients here at the Cleveland Clinic which is a referral hospital for many Middle Eastern patients,” says Dr Benninger.

Dr Benninger’s presentation is a summary of an Evidence Based Review Committee established by the American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery. The committee was truly multispecialty with involvement of otolaryngology, endocrine and general surgery, endocrinology, anaesthesiology, speech-language pathology, general medicine, nursing and individuals representing thyroid surgery patients.

The patient’s voice post-thyroid surgery is affected when the thyroid surgeons have to dissect the thyroid gland from the recurrent laryngeal nerve that runs most of the muscles of the larynx. In rare cases of thyroid cancer the nerve may purposely be cut. In most cases, it is the irritation of the nerve with dissection that can affect its function. One of the recommendations is for the surgeon to identify the nerve and preserve it if possible. This is in contradiction to some surgeons who try to avoid the nerve and by doing so may inadvertently injure it.

Dr Benninger highlighted the main recommendations saying “any patient who has hoarseness two weeks after surgery, any patient who is hoarse before thyroid surgery, and any patient who has had prior anterior neck surgery (such as an anterior cervical spinal fusion, prior thyroid surgery or carotid artery surgery) should have his/her larynx examined.”

In an estimated 1 out of every 250 thyroid surgeries, damage is done to the laryngeal nerves, the nerves that control the voice.

Running alongside the conference is an exhibition with more than 70 exhibitors showcasing the latest technologies and product launches from manufacturers and distributors within the ENT field. Products such as hearing aids, laser machines, microsurgical instruments and sleep apnoea devices will be on display from companies such as Karl Storz, Medtronic, GlaxosmithKline, and MSD.

The event is supported by the UAE Ministry of Health and the Dubai Health Authority.

For more information on the Otolaryngology Conference & Exhibition, please call +971 4 408 2813 or visit

Note to Editors

About Informa Life Sciences Exhibitions:
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About Dr. Benninger:
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For media enquiries please contact:
Weaam El Ataya
Public Relations and Social Media Executive
Informa Life Science Exhibitions
T: +971 4 408 2813