Causes of Enlarged Thyroid Gland and Its Treatment Information

Information on Enlarged Thyroid Gland

  • The thyroid is an endocrine gland situated at the lower front of the neck which produces important hormones that regulate metabolism, sexual development and growth of an individual.

  • Some thyroid disorders can influence the hormonal production and enlargement of the gland. Goiter is the common term when the thyroid gland enlarges.

  • At times, this gland can become abnormally bigger but still functions as usual or would secrete too excessive or too little hormones.

  • More often than not, goiter or enlarged thyroid is associated with the following symptoms:

    • Coughing

    • Hoarseness of voice

    • Difficulty of breathing

    • Pain in the neck area

    • Swallowing difficulty

    • Noticeable swollen neck

  • In some cases, distended thyroid may not be too swollen or uncomfortable. But, instances when this gives off lesser hormones, then manifestation of hypothyroidism occurs. Symptoms include hair loss, brittle nails and hair, constipation, weight gain, fatigue, dry and itchy skin, and cold sensitivity.

  • When this secretes excessive thyroid hormones, hyperthyroidism occurs which triggers symptoms like anxiety, increased appetite, tremors, weight loss, irritability and nervousness.

Enlarged Thyroid Gland Causes

  • Thyroiditis: This happens when the thyroid becomes inflamed due to infection.

  • Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis: It is an autoimmune condition where the immune system is the chief culprit for the disease, hindering it from secreting normal amount of hormones. When the thyroid attempts to produce hormones, it only inflames itself resulting to enlargement.

  • Grave’s Disease: It is another autoimmune disorder which is known to be the most usual cause of thyroid enlargement. This disease produces antibodies that fights the system and triggers over secretion of hormones. Consequently, the gland swells resulting to goiter.

  • Thyroid Cancer: It is a rarely occurring thyroid condition where the cause is unknown. When there is unusual reproduction of thyroid cells, swelling at the lower part of the neck occurs.

  • Iodine Deficiency: Iodine is a significant element in thyroid gland processes. Lack of this can extremely stimulate the thyroid gland leading to the formation of a lump.

  • Nodules: These creates an obvious swelling at the base of the neck but are considered benign in nature.

Enlarged Thyroid Gland Treatment

  • If the condition is not severe, it can be dealt with hormonal therapy and medication. Medication for hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism is initiated, depending on the case to normalize hormone secretion.

  • To help lessen the thyroid gland inflammation, corticosteroid can be administered.

  • When the enlargement is too extensive affecting other parts of the neck and gets into normal breathing and eating, then surgery is indicated.

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