Aims: Wound closure after thyroidectomy and parathyroidectomy is associated with patients’ satisfaction, perception of cosmetic appearance, and experience of postoperative pain. Subcutaneous sutures, clips, and tissue adhesive are the three major methods of wound closure. In this study, we conducted a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials to evaluate the outcomes of these methods. Methods: Relevant studies published before December 2017 were identified from PubMed, Embase, Cochrane Library, Scopus, and the ClinicalTrials.gov registry. Individual effect sizes were standardized, and a meta-analysis was conducted to calculate the pooled effect size by using random-effect models. The primary outcome was the cosmetic appearance, which was evaluated 4 weeks, 6 weeks, and 6 months after surgery. The secondary outcomes were patient satisfaction, postoperative pain, and complications. Results: A total of nine trials with 612 patients were reviewed. No significant difference was observed in patient satisfaction, postoperative pain, and complications among the wound closure methods. However, according to surgeon assessment, the subcutaneous suture method resulted in a significantly more favorable cosmetic appearance than the clip method (mean difference: −1.47, 95% confidence interval: −2.72 to −0.23). Conclusion: In the current study, no differences were found in patient satisfaction and postoperative pain among the subcutaneous suture, clip, and tissue adhesive wound closure methods. However, surgeons provided a more favorable appraisal for the subcutaneous suture method because of the improved cosmetic appearance. The choice of the closure method should be based on surgeon’s preference and cost.
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