What are thyroid nodules??
Before I bring out any elaboration about thyroid nodules, let me explain the significance of thyroid gland in human body.
Thyroid gland is traced in front of the neck, underneath the thyroid cartilage named as Adam’s apple. It comprises of two sections and found on either one or both the sides of the wind pipe.
Though having a small size, yet thyroid gland plays a significant role in our body. Thyroid gland creates hormones in the body which is beneficial for growth and development in terms of both energy and rate of metabolism.
The hormone which was created first was measured by another exciting hormone known as thyroid stimulating hormone or TSH.
The thyroid is an endocrine system which absorbs iodine from the meal in order to produce two chief hormones out of it. They are as follows:-
- Triiodothyronine also known as T3
- Thyroxine also known as T4
There are two organs in the brain named hypothalamus and pituitary which plays an active role in retaining the levels of hormones. Levels of T3 and T4 are to be maintained at an optimum level.
Thyroid gland helps in the complete functioning of our body but most importantly it is meant for growth, development and energy metabolism.
From where the thyroid gland ends, thyroid nodules begin. Let’s converse about them briefly.
“Thyroid nodules are a tumor or bump that occurs in the endocrine gland named as thyroid gland.”
Just like tumors are cancerous or non-cancerous. Similarly nodules are considered to be a tumor or lumps which are not always malignant. They can occur both in men and women, but percentage of causing in women are higher than that of men.
Women with 50 or above years maximize the chances of occurrence of nodules in thyroid. On the basis of our research, it has been found that only 5 percent or less than that may suffer from cancerous nodules.
Patient may suffer from either single or multiple nodules in the gland named thyroid. Nodules may be solid, cystic or complex. Some nodules form like a cyst and encompasses with fluid or liquid substance in it, instead of thyroid tissue.
Any abnormality in the thyroid gland may result to be thyroid nodules, forming a tumor in the throat. They are mostly benign but some are cancerous too.
Malignant thyroid nodules are extremely treatable if known within the time span and are wholly comfortable to head their happy life.
Thyroid nodules causes
If every disease indicates one or the other symptoms, then they do have some reasons of causing it.
Here we will discuss about some causes or risk factors that will increase the burden of sufferings which are as follows:-
Lack of iodine is one of the most important reasons of thyroid nodules causes. Thyroid uses iodine from an appetite which helps in the production of hormones. When there is a deficiency of iodine in our diet, then this will lead to the thyroid nodules causes.
This type of iodine deficiency is not found in United States because there a stable amount of iodine is added to salty and other kinds of foods. Moreover, ideal amount of iodine will lessens the chances of formation of thyroid nodules causes.
History of the family is taken as another aim of thyroid causes. If any ancestor of our family was suffered from thyroid or several other endocrine cancers increases the chances of occurrence of cancerous thyroid nodules causes.
Though there are nodules which are usually non-cancerous but if associated with troublesome signs, can lead you to the malignant thyroid nodules causes.
Irregular growth of thyroid tissues are mostly cancerous but sometimes may lead to be a serious thyroid nodules causes. They are usually referred to as thyroid adenomas, which are usually non-cancerous but if associated with some troubling symptoms, may turn out to be a severe thyroid nodules causes.
An overproduction of hormone in the thyroid usually termed as hyperthyroidism may reflect thyroid nodules causes.
Polyp in thyroid may be another reason of thyroid nodules causes. Cystic are the ones that are comprised mostly of liquid substance along with some inclusion of solid components. Mostly thyroid cysts are benign in nature and can rarely comprehend cancerous cells, leading to be malignant thyroid nodule causes.
Expansion of a thyroid gland may be termed as “Goiter”, which occurs because of shortage of iodine. Any discomfort in the thyroid gland, forming multiple thyroid nodules inside the goiter, may outcomes thyroid nodules causes.
Swelling or puffiness in the thyroid gland consequences to be thyroid nodules causes.
Thyroid nodules symptoms
Thyroid nodules symptoms are not often felt unless the size of nodules becomes larger. Diagnosis of malignant thyroid nodules symptom are untraceable at early stages. Patients diagnosed from thyroid nodules symptoms are often treatable.
There are several thyroid nodules symptoms which if malignant and left untreated would be a severe cause of death. Survival rate is high with the patients suffering with thyroid nodules symptoms.
Following are the unnoticeable thyroid nodules symptoms:-
- Exertion in swallowing- Sometimes an extra effort or pain occurs during swallowing of food, which will be a reason of thyroid nodules symptoms.
Though this symptom may arise because of some throat issues but can also occur due to an enlargement of thyroid nodules, ultimately causing thyroid nodules symptoms.
- Choking or hoarse sound- While speaking, if we feel like some blocking throat or an uneasiness, then these choking or hoarsen vocal sound may outcome thyroid nodules symptom.
Frequently clogging while communication if found, should be treated immediately because may be a severe reason of cancerous thyroid nodules symptoms.
- Trouble in breathing– Thyroid nodules symptoms consequences shortens of breathe. Inability to breathe may be taken as a sign of other heart related problems. But if associated with one or more symptoms, then this can be treated as thyroid nodules symptoms.
4. Neck ache– Neck pain is a common cause found in both men and women. But if this pain turns to be unbearable and consistent, then would be thyroid nodules symptoms
- Inflamed lymph node- Sore or swollen lymph node can also prove to be a symptom of thyroid nodules.
Soreness may affect the lymph node due to an expansion of thyroid nodules, ultimately resulting to be the thyroid nodules causes.
- Tumor in the neck- An occurrence of lump or bump inside the neck would be as another reason of symptoms of thyroid nodules.
Tumors are not always cancerous but should be treated as early as known. Above mentioned signs can relate to all sorts of thyroid nodules syndromes.
Thyroid nodules are not cancerous but sometimes thyroid cancer would be a reason of thyroid nodules symptoms.
Thyroid nodules size
More than 50 percent population of above 60 years of age is suffering with this common disease named as thyroid nodules. Mostly are smaller in size which is usually considered as normal.
But cancerous thyroid nodules depend upon the size of it. As soon as the size increases, it maximizes the percentage of patients suffering with cancerous nodules. If its size lies between 1.0-1.9 cm, then the rate of cancerous percentage is 10.5.
And if those sizes goes beyond 2 cm or lies between 2.0-2.9 cm then rate of percentage increases to 15, in terms of cancerous nodules.
Size plays a vital role in detecting the cancerous nodules. If that size goes outside the range of 2 cm, then the risk of cancer will not be avoided.
Overall, enlargement of nodules may be a cause of thyroid nodules symptoms.
Multiple thyroid nodules
Nodules in thyroid may be single or multiple. When our thyroid gland computes with several nodules, then this is termed as multiple thyroid nodules.
Specifically, these multiple nodules in the thyroid are known as multi nodular goiter. As it name itself describes its meaning, but still when a number nodules develop in our thyroid, is termed as multiple thyroid nodules.
Multiple thyroid nodules may or may not be cancerous. Thyroid nodule appears when an irregular growth of cells forms a tumor in the endocrine gland named as thyroid gland. Similarly, countless tumors are formed in the thyroid gland and are called as multiple thyroid nodules.
Enlarged thyroid nodules
An enlarged nodules occurs when it multiplies and appears like anything. Multiplicity of nodules will lead you to enlarged nodules within the thyroid gland.
When a large number of thyroid cells forms a lump in the gland, results into an enlargement of nodules. Expansion of nodules may be taken as a reason of causing it cancerous.
An irregular production of thyroid hormones may be taken a person of suffering from a disease named, hyperthyroidism, which is a cause of thyroid illness. Any uneasiness in the thyroid gland may reflect enlarged nodules.
Thyroid nodules surgery
Doctors recommend nodules surgery, once nodules are diagnosed after undergoing a physical examination of the thyroid gland.
Thyroid surgery may takes place depending upon the size of the nodules or expansion of the gland.
Thyroid nodules surgery may either be done as partially or wholly. There are of two types – partial thyroidectomy or hemi- thyroidectomy and total thyroidectomy.
Partial thyroidectomy is a kind of surgery under which only a portion of infectious thyroid is removed, depending upon the size of the nodule.
Total thyroidectomy is another type of thyroid surgery under which a complete removal of gland takes place. When cancer has completely spread to thyroid gland, then it’s better to adopt this type of thyroid nodules surgery.
Thyroid nodules ultrasound
After recognition of nodules, the most important thing which should be known for doctors and us is that, those nodules present in the thyroid are cancerous or non-cancerous. Fine needle aspiration biopsy is one of the tests which should be undertaken for identifying the nodules malignancy or non-malignancy.
Surgery is opted if a patient is diagnosed with cancerous nodules. If we found a quick increase in the size of it, then this would again be a worry for both patient and doctor. In order to overcome from this problem, surgery is the only way being recommended by doctors.
Another test which a patient should undergo is ultrasound of a whole thyroid gland. Ultrasound is a 10 minutes process which demonstrates the complete disclosure of nodules including the size and features of it.
Ultrasound is the safest measure used for diagnosing the nodules of thyroid. There are several tests which are painful and do not give accurate results, but ultrasound is a low cost, painless test with remarkable results. Some cream like jelly is applied on our skin which conveys the sound waves through the skin and their nearby areas.
Thyroid nodules treatment
Thyroid nodules treatment is directly proportional to the cause of it. If cancerous nodules are diagnosed, then doctor would recommend surgery in order to remove the virus of cancer from the gland.
Surgery is a treatment which will be suggested by doctors, if the size of nodules is larger, specifically 4 cm or more.
During the screening of thyroid gland, if we detect a multifaceted cyst, then surgery would be the only way of curing the nodules.
Chances of cancerous nodules symptoms are less in count. If patients are diagnosed with non-malignant thyroid tissues then a routine examination of the gland will make the best out of it. Having an ultrasound after a few months will provides the complete disclosure of nodules.
There are some non-surgical treatments which should be chosen by doctors, if nodules are producing hormones.
Non-surgical treatment embraces radioactive iodine which destroys the gland and having a medicine will deteriorate the effects of thyroid hormones.
Multiple thyroid nodules treatment
Sometimes biopsy of nodules located in thyroid is indeterminate and in these cases repeated biopsies after every 3 months being advised by the doctor. Surgery is the only way for treating the multiple number of nodules. Total thyroidectomy is the only way for treating the multiple nodules, which is an operational process of 2- 3 hours recommended by doctors.
Surgery would be taken as a treatment of thyroid nodules when patient feels like difficulty in swallowing, any sort of change in voice or non-functioning of thyroid gland. Thyroid producing hormones are given as a medicine on regular basis for the whole of your life, if complete removal of gland has taken place.
Are thyroid nodules cancerous??
As per our description about nodules, tumors located inside the neck are cancerous or non-cancerous. Mostly patients those are diagnosed with nodules are benign in nature and are compiled with fluid substances rather than tissues of thyroid.
It has been observed that, patients suffering from malignant nodules are less in count. Only 5 percent or less than that are detected with cancerous tissues of nodules. Moreover, worldwide around 95 percent patients are detected with non-cancerous thyroid nodules or thyroid cysts.
What causes thyroid nodules to form??
There are three possible conditions which may arise out of thyroid nodules. Formation of nodules in thyroid would lead you to the following 3 disorders:-
Hypothyroidism is a cause of less production of hormones in the thyroid gland. Thyroid hormones secretes into our blood stream which will help our body in its growth and development. But when this hormonal production reduces its potential of secretion, then this would adversely affect the rate of metabolism in terms of energy, growth and development of our body.
Thyroid cancer is the most common kind of cancer mostly found in women of more than 60 years of age. Men diagnosed with the presence of nodules are less in number but if found are diagnosed with thyroid cancer.
When an irregular growth of cell develops a cancerous tumor, then this would be taken as another cause of formation of nodules.
Hashimoto’s disease is another cause of formation of nodules. This disease may cause because of non-functioning of thyroid gland. Thyroid plays an important in regulating temperature of the body, heart rate and many more.
An enlargement of thyroid gland is considered to be a major cause of goiter or a disease named Hashimoto’s.
Thyroid nodules and Hypothyroidism relation
There is a direct connection between thyroid nodules and hypothyroidism. When during a CT scan or ultrasound, nodules are detected which may later on become the primary cause of hypothyroidism. This deteriorates the hormonal production which gets diluted into the blood and at last helps in retaining an energy metabolism in our body.
Sometimes, these nodules increase the possibility of hyperthyroidism which is a cause of overproduction of thyroid hormones and damages the functionality of the gland.
Its better to be treated regularly as soon as any discomfort arises in our body. Ignorance is the bad signal for heading your life. Life is uncertain, everybody is aware about it. But living it carelessly is not the right way. God has embraced us with such a gift, let’s don’t waste it.
We have a saying that,“Precaution is better than cure.” So, believe this line and take several precautions that were advised by the doctor from time to time. For making a successful treatment, there are some precautions which should be undergone by the patients, and if done in a good way, then this will increase your expectancy of happy life.
Hope this article proves to be productive for all our readers!!
Stay connected and be as healthy as always!!