Patient Comments: Fine-Needle Aspiration Biopsy of the Thyroid - Experience

What was your experience with fine-needle aspiration of your thyroid?

Comment from: Angie, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: May 30

Today I had my second fine needle aspiration biopsy of my thyroid and it was two very different experiences. My first time I was sent by my doctor to a surgeon for the test and he used lidocaine to numb the skin. He used only four needle insertions but the pressure was terrible and the emotional storm left me unable to respond or talk to anyone for hours, then three days of terrible depression. New doctor, totally new experience; first my new doctor did the test himself, no numbing medications (they were not needed). He stuck me approximately 20 times, small pin pricks, the pressure was odd but not horrible, and I did feel pain on one of my nodules but from the sonogram wand pressing it into my trachea rather than from the nodule. No emotional storm! And my doctor said that the first episode could have been a result of pushing the lidocaine into the thyroid making it react with chemicals that brought on a clinical (chemical) depression. I am sore, and a little swollen but I am mentally and physically just fine this time.

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Comment from: 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: May 21

I do not understand when people say this hurts. I had 3 fine-needle aspirations (FNA) of my thyroid and it didn"t hurt at all. A mosquito bite hurts more than that.

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Comment from: 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: May 19

I just had fine-needle aspiration of my thyroid yesterday and it was rough but I made it through! I had my neck numbed, 3 needles, and no cancer! I am so thankful. Anyone who has to have a biopsy of the thyroid done, do what your doctor asks of you and you will be just fine. I had slight pain and swelling at home. I noticed a white sticky drainage from the needle stick, it was tissue.

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Comment from: ae1007, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: May 12

I have four nodules biopsied today, about 9 needles per nodule. So with the numbing medication and biopsies it was about 40 needles. The doctor doing the fine-needle aspiration of my thyroid reported he had never done that many nodules in one procedure but my endocrinologist ordered it and after looking at the sonograms he agreed. I was overwhelmed with that, after having read information online about everyone else"s 4 to 5 needle experiences. I was expecting a 15 minute procedure with a few needles, not what I got. It took about 2 hours with 40 needles even with the ultrasound. It was not painful, in the sense of pain. The pressure felt weird. It was admittedly stressful and required a lot of zoning out. It hasn't been a day yet, but so far the irritation is still there. Hopefully the soreness will decrease after some sleep. I was glad the doctor was so thorough because I won"t have to do that again because of lack of tissue. If you are afraid, try not to panic, practice some zoning out, meditation skills, or whatever helps you get through tough moments, then use them! The irritation is temporary and the procedure is important for your overall health and wellbeing. Good luck!

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Comment from: bam, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: May 02

I didn't have any numbing medication and the fine-needle aspiration of my thyroid did not hurt much at all. I had 4 needle sticks with a back and forth motion with each. It just feels like a prick. I had very little soreness afterwards.

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Comment from: telise25, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: May 01

Maybe something went wrong with my fine needle aspiration (FNA) because I am in pain. I had FNA on Sunday, spent Monday in bed with 102 fever and today is Tuesday and it hurts to swallow. I contacted my doctor and he said it"s normal for 3 to 5 days, and to take a pain reliever. Everything I read about FNA said it wouldn"t hurt. I didn"t have any anesthetic and the needle pricks (4) were bad enough. Now I feel like a big sore lump in my throat. Fever did go down with Tylenol.

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Comment from: Deb32, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: May 01

I went in for a fine needle biopsy of my thyroid on May 16, 2014. I was told all I would feel was a little pressure. He injected the lidocaine and it was a little sting no big deal. When he started the biopsy it hurt a little bit so he gave some more lidocaine; he continued and the pain got worse. When he got to the second nodule the pain was so bad I had tears. He had to stop because it started bleeding. When I left the hospital I had no voice for 3 days and it hurt badly. To make matters worse the test results were inconclusive. I will have to repeat the test again in a few months.

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