Mismanaged Thyroid Pathology Leads to Surgical Complications

This case study delves into a situation involving potential mismanagement of thyroid pathology, leading to surgical complications and subsequent numbness in the patient's face.

ByWendy Ketner, M.D.


Published on February 5, 2024

Team of surgeons operating in hospital

Case Overview

This case study delves into a complex medical scenario involving an adult patient who initially presented with a benign mass on the left side of their neck. Despite being benign, surgical intervention was recommended. The first surgery, performed by an Otolaryngologist at the end of 2019, failed to completely remove the mass and instead resulted in the removal of half of the thyroid. This necessitated a second surgery involving two Otolaryngologists.

Post-operatively, the patient experienced numbness on the left side of their lip and cheek, indicating potential nerve damage. This case seeks to explore potential mismanagement in thyroid pathology and hormone levels that may have contributed to these complications.

Questions to the Endocrinology expert and their responses


Can you share your experience with managing thyroid pathology and thyroid hormone levels?

As a board-certified internist and endocrinologist, I've spent over a decade specializing in thyroid pathology and hormone management. Currently, I serve as an assistant professor of medicine in a top-ranked institution's division of endocrinology, diabetes, and lipid research.


Have you ever reviewed or worked on a similar case? If yes, could you elaborate?

Yes, I have previously served as an expert witness on a case that involved complications from neck surgery - specifically parathyroid surgery. My role required me to review medical records thoroughly and provide my expert opinion based on my extensive knowledge and experience in this field.

About the expert

This expert is a highly experienced endocrinologist with double board-certification in internal medicine and endocrinology, diabetes, and metabolism. They have completed their MD from a renowned university in Mexico, followed by a residency in internal medicine at a leading medical center in Illinois, and a fellowship in clinical endocrinology at a top-tier medical school. Currently serving as an assistant professor of endocrinology, metabolism, and lipid research at a prominent medical school and as a staff physician at a major hospital, this expert brings extensive practical and academic experience to the case study.

Expert headshot



About the author

Wendy Ketner, M.D.

Wendy Ketner, M.D.

Dr. Wendy Ketner is a distinguished medical professional with a comprehensive background in surgery and medical research. Currently serving as the Senior Vice President of Medical Affairs at the Expert Institute, she plays a pivotal role in overseeing the organization's most important client relationships. Dr. Ketner's extensive surgical training was completed at Mount Sinai Beth Israel, where she gained hands-on experience in various general surgery procedures, including hernia repairs, cholecystectomies, appendectomies, mastectomies for breast cancer, breast reconstruction, surgical oncology, vascular surgery, and colorectal surgery. She also provided care in the surgical intensive care unit.

Her research interests have focused on post-mastectomy reconstruction and the surgical treatment of gastric cancer, including co-authoring a textbook chapter on the subject. Additionally, she has contributed to research on the percutaneous delivery of stem cells following myocardial infarction.

Dr. Ketner's educational background includes a Bachelor's degree from Yale University in Latin American Studies and a Doctor of Medicine (M.D.) from SUNY Downstate College of Medicine. Moreover, she is a member of the Board of Advisors for Opollo Technologies, a fintech healthcare AI company, contributing her medical expertise to enhance healthcare technology solutions. Her role at Expert Institute involves leveraging her medical knowledge to provide insights into legal cases, underscoring her unique blend of medical and legal acumen.

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