An enlarged thyroid gland known as a goiter makes the neck bulge. A butterfly-shaped thyroid gland is located in front of the windpipe and is responsible for producing and secreting hormones that control metabolism and development. Most goiter cases belong to the category of "simple" goiters. These don't cause symptoms, don't affect thyroid function, don't entail inflammation, and frequently have no clear explanation.
Among the most common thyroid disease is goiter. It does not mean the thyroid is always functioning poorly; however, it may indicate an untreated underlying thyroid condition. Women are more likely to develop goiters than men, particularly after menopause. After age 40, goiters and thyroid disorders are usually more common.
There are various types of goiter. They include
- Colloid goiter
- Toxic nodular or multinodular goiter
- Nontoxic goiter
Apart from swelling at the bottom of the neck, most people with goiters don't exhibit any additional symptoms. The goiter is often so very little that only rarely found through a regular medical examination or imaging test for another condition. Symptoms depend on the state of the thyroid and the rate of growth.
Underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism)
Signs and symptoms of hypothyroidism include:
Overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism)
Signs and symptoms of hyperthyroidism include:
The airway and vocal cords may be blocked by a goiter depending on its size or location. Some warning signs and symptoms include:
When to see a doctor?
Anyone suffering from the goiter symptoms listed above should see a doctor immediately since you could require therapy for hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism. Goiters develop slowly, but if you have a large one and experience breathlessness or vocal changes, you should see a doctor. The jugular vein, windpipe, esophagus, or nerve connecting to the larynx could all be under pressure from the goiter. The growth has to be treated and could need to be removed surgically.
Several factors can trigger a goiter, including
Graves' disease: This autoimmune condition results in the overproduction of thyroid hormone and enlargement of the thyroid gland.
Hashimoto's thyroiditis: The thyroid is inflamed in Hashimoto's thyroiditis. Typically, it is temporary and subsides when the inflammation resolves.
Nodules, which can be hard or fluid-filled, can develop on one or both sides of the thyroid gland, causing the gland overall to grow.
Thyroid cancer: A few types of thyroid cancer can cause massive gland enlargement. These include lymphoma, anaplastic thyroid cancer, and infiltrating papillary thyroid carcinom
The hormone human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG), released during pregnancy, may cause a slight growth of the thyroid gland. Once the baby is born, this usually gets better on its own.
Thyroiditis is an inflammatory condition that can cause soreness and swell in the thyroid and over- or under-production of the thyroid hormone thyroxine. Thyroiditis can develop after childbirth or as a result of a viral infection.
Iodine is necessary for producing thyroid hormones, and a diet low in iodine can cause an enlargement of the thyroid. In developing nations where iodine is often added to table salt and other meals, iodine shortage is frequently found.
Risk factors for goiter are:
- Goiter is more common in women than in men.
- Have a family history of thyroid nodules, cancer, or other thyroid-related issues.
- Iodine consumption is inadequate.
- Being over the age of 40 may affect the health of the thyroid.
- Being pregnant or going through menopause might cause thyroid problems since these risk factors aren't always evident. Pregnancy and menopause can also cause thyroid issues.
- Get radiation treatment for the chest or neck. The way the thyroid works may alter as a result of radiation.
Here are some tips for preventing goiter:
- Use only iodized salt for seasoning meals.
- Consume iodine-rich seafood, including seaweed, shrimp, and shellfish.
- Be careful not to overexpose yourself to radiation at work or while receiving radiation therapy.
The doctor may touch the neck and ask patients to swallow while observing the reaction to determine whether they have a goiter. There are many methods to identify a goiter, including
A blood test that measures certain hormone levels can show whether or not the thyroid gland is functioning normally.
This blood test analyses the aberrant antibodies created if you are at risk for developing autoimmune thyroid disease.
ultrasound : Using an ultrasound, the doctor can examine the size of the thyroid gland and check for nodules in details
This imaging procedure tells you how big and well-functioning your thyroid gland is.
MRI or CT scan
MRIor CT scan: If the goiter is big or has spread into the chest, an MRI or CT scan may be performed.
Biopsy: A FNAC needle is inserted into the thyroid gland during a FNAC to remove a sample of tissue or fluid that will later be studied under a microscope or put through additional procedures.
The doctor will choose a therapy regimen based on the goiter's size, condition, and accompanying symptoms. Health issues that cause the goiter are also taken into account during treatment.
It may be possible to reduce the size of the goiter with the help of the drugs people take to treat hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism. If you have thyroiditis, medications help lessen the inflammation.
If the thyroid becomes too big or does not respond to drug therapy, (Hemi / Total) thyroidectomy, a surgical procedure to remove the thyroid, is a possibility
Radioactive iodine (RAI) may be required in patients with toxic multinodular goiters. Orally consumed RAI goes via the blood to the thyroid, eliminating the hyperactive tissue.
The iodine intake may need to be adjusted depending on the type of goiter you have. If the goiter is small and not uncomfortable, you might not need any treatment at all.
Do’s and Don’ts
The doctor will advise you with a thyroid diet dos and don'ts list in addition to establishing a diagnosis. While taking food precautions is necessary for thyroid patients, taking any prescription medications as prescribed by your doctor is even more crucial.
|Eat a balanced diet. ||Eat soybean-related foods|
|Eat healthy dairy products.||Eat cruciferous vegetables, including broccoli, cabbage, and cauliflower|
|Check your thyroid levels regularly.||Do smoking or drinking alcohol|
|Use iodized salt in your food.||Self-medicate for the condition|
|Keep your body hydrated||Eat excess sugar & caffeinated beverages|
Precautions and self-care will help you fight the condition positively and improve your quality of life.
Goiter Care at Medicover
At Medicover hospitals, we have the best team of doctors and endocrinologists who collaborate to deliver Goiter treatment with maximum accuracy. Our highly experienced medical staff treat Goiter and its symptoms using the most up-to-date healthcare techniques and technology. We use a multidisciplinary approach to treat Goiter to give patients complete treatment and respond to their medical requirements for a quicker and more lasting recovery.