Percutaneous Ethanol Injection
Pp. 85-87 (3)
Samer El-Kaissi and Jack R Wall
Percutaneous ethanol injection post-fluid aspiration of pure thyroid cysts and
predominantly cystic thyroid nodules is highly effective in preventing fluid reaccumulation.
The procedure is simple, safe and is performed in the outpatient clinic
under ultrasound guidance. A coordinated approach between the physician and an
experienced assistant who controls fluid aspiration and alcohol injection is essential.
Before ablation is undertaken, FNA biopsy of the solid component is essential to
exclude malignancy. Any suspicious thyroid nodules should also be biopsied. Alcohol
leakage is an uncommon but serious complication of percutaneous ethanol injection
and may lead to voice changes due to demyelination of the recurrent laryngeal nerve.
The trans-isthmic approach may be associated with a lower risk of ethanol leakage.
Percutaneous ethanol injection is also effective for the ablation of metastatic cervical
lymph nodes in thyroid cancer patients and may avoid the need for re-operation.
However, ethanol ablation is not the first option in hyperfunctioning thyroid nodules
and parathyroid adenomas due to poor response rates.
cystic, thyroid nodule, percutaneous, ethanol, ablation, thyroid nodule
volume, aspiration, two-way valve, trans-isthmic, ethanol leakage, nerve
demyelination, proteinaceous, parathyroid adenoma, malignant cervical nodes,
Medical Subspecialties Institute, Endocrine Unit Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi, Al Maryah Island, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.