Thyroid Nodules - Treatments

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What is the treatment for thyroid nodules?

Follicular adenomas are difficult to distinguish from follicular cancers. Follicular nodules, other nodules highly suspicious for cancerous and definite cancer should be treated by surgery. Most thyroid cancers are curable and rarely cause life-threatening problems. Any nodule not removed needs to be watched closely by follow-up with the physician every 6 to 12 months. This follow-up may involve a physical examination, ultrasound examination, or both. Occasionally, a physician may attempt to shrink the nodule by using suppressive doses of thyroid hormone. Some physicians believe that if a nodule shrinks on suppressive therapy, it is more likely to be benign. If the nodule continues to grow regardless of suppressive therapy, surgery should be considered strongly. The value of suppressive therapy, however, is controversial.

If a nodule causes hyperthyroidism, it is usually noncancerous. Treatment is aimed at preventing the signs, symptoms, and complications of hyperthyroidism, such as heart failure, osteoporosis,, and rapid heart rate. Treatments include destroying the gland using radioactive iodine (131-iodine), blocking production of thyroid hormone with medications, or conservatively following the patient with mild hyperthyroidism. "Subclinical hyperthyroidism" refers to an adult patient with a hyperfunctioning nodule, but TSH is minimally suppressed and the blood levels of thyroid hormones are normal. Treatment is individualized based on age, presence of other medical conditions, and patient preference.

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Comment from: melwrona, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: May 28

I went in for a routine sinus check because I was snoring and they found some thyroid nodules. I had a needle biopsy done and they said I had some cancer cells. I had surgery for right side thyroid and a week later another surgery for the rest of the thyroid because they said they found cancer cells, and then 3 months later another surgery because they said they did not get it all out (go figure). Well, I was told I needed a 4th surgery because they still did not get it all out because my levels were still a little high for radioactive iodine treatment. I at that point said, you are crazy. I went to a cancer center and unbelievably I never had thyroid cancer. Pathology was wrong all 3 surgery times. I am furious. I now take calcium supplements because they damaged my parathyroid, and levothyroxine. Please if anyone is told they have thyroid cancer and needs surgery, please get a second and third opinion. If I would have had the 4th surgery they would have damaged my vocal cords permanently. As for the medicines it is awful. I have wheezing, snoring still, tiredness, foggy head, restlessness, low calcium numbness, and you name it, I got it. Good luck to you guys.

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Comment from: Kara, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: January 14

I am a 41 year old mom and consider myself very active and in good shape. I was at my son's baseball game on July 11th, when I started feeling weird, I had pain in my fingertips and my whole body started to ache. I went home and lay down, and I couldn't get out of bed for 3 days! I had all over body aches, worse than I have ever had in my life; I truly thought I was dying. I had terrible night sweats and kept getting very hot and then very cold. I imagine I had a fever but was too ill to get up to check. After I was well enough to drag myself to the doctor, I tested positive for mononucleosis. Two days ago marked 6 months of struggling with this virus. I have extreme fatigue and my body aches are still very present, not responsive to OTC Tylenol or Advil. I am miserable and I too, want my life back! I am told that only rest will help, specifically 3 plus weeks of lying in bed doing nothing! I am a mom of 6, I work, and have a lot of cleaning, laundry, homework-helping, etc. That kind of rest is not an option! I wish there was a cure for this virus. I also wish someone could tell me when I will feel normal again!

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