Thyroid nodules are solid or fluid-filled lumps that form within your thyroid, a small gland located at the base of your neck, just above your breastbone.
The great majority of thyroid nodules aren't serious and don't cause symptoms. Thyroid cancer accounts for only a small percentage of thyroid nodules.
You often won't know you have a thyroid nodule until your doctor discovers it during a routine medical exam. Some thyroid nodules, however, may become large enough to be visible or make it difficult to swallow or breathe.
Treatment options depend on the type of thyroid nodule you have.
Apr. 04, 2014
- Thyroid nodules. American Thyroid Association. http://thyroid.org/wp-content/uploads/patients/brochures/Nodules_brochure.pdf. Accessed Nov. 18, 2013.
- Ross DS. Diagnostic approach to and treatment of thyroid nodules. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Nov. 18, 2013.
- Ross DS. Overview of thyroid nodule formation. http://www.uptodate.com/home/. Accessed Nov. 18, 2013.
- Approach to the patient with a thyroid nodule. The Merck Manuals: The Merck Manual for Healthcare Professionals. http://www.merckmanuals.com/professional/endocrine_and_metabolic_disorders/thyroid_disorders/approach_to_the_patient_with_a_thyroid_nodule.html?qt=4.%09Approach to the patient with a thyroid nodule&alt=sh. Accessed Nov. 18, 2013.
- Cooper DS, et al. Revised American Thyroid Association management guidelines for patients with thyroid nodules and differentiated thyroid cancer. Thyroid. 2009;19:1167.
- Lalwani AK. Current Diagnosis & Treatment in Otolaryngology — Head & Neck Surgery. 3rd ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2012. http://www.accessmedicine.com/resourceTOC.aspx?resourceID=39. Accessed Nov. 18, 2013.
- Doherty GM, ed. Current Diagnosis & Treatment: Surgery. 13th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2010. http://www.accessmedicine.com/resourceTOC.aspx?resourceID=23. Accessed Nov. 18, 2013.
- Ross DS. Cystic thyroid nodules. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Nov. 18, 2013.
- Goiter. American Thyroid Association. http://www.thyroid.org.php54-1.ord1-1.websitetestlink.com/what-is-a-goiter/. Accessed Nov. 18, 2013.
- Thyroid cancer. American Cancer Society. http://www.cancer.org/cancer/thyroidcancer/detailedguide/index. Accessed Nov. 18, 2013.
- Nippoldt TB (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Nov. 19, 2013.