The thyroid gland, located in the anterior part of the trachea, is responsible for the release of the hormones T3 and T4, which have crucial functions for human health.
If these hormones are released less than a certain level or if they are released more than a certain level, it causes changings in human metabolism. Underactive gland is called Hypothyroidism, while overactive gland is called Hyperthyroidism.
Thyroid gland disorders can sometimes progress insidiously. There are some risk factors that need to be taken into consideration. The risk is higher in populations that people live in areas that are weak in iodine ions, when iodine consumption is not enough, for the people who are exposed to radiation in their past life, for those who use drugs that may cause toxicity to the thyroid gland (Lithium, Interferon and amiodarone, etc.) and for those who have hereditary thyroid gland disease.
What Are The Symptoms?
If thyroid hormones are released too much; Insomnia, thinning skin, sweating, tremors in the hands, palpitations, changes in blood pressure, enlarged pupils (exophthalmos), moist skin, weight loss, irritability, thinning hair and hair loss, intermittent diarrhea attacks, irregular menstrual periods can be seen.
If thyroid hormones are released less; thinning voice, decrease in sweating, weakness and fatigue, swelling on the back of the hands and feet, constipation, depression, increase in body weight, decrease in the duration and frequency of menstruation and weak memory may be seen.
How Do We Diagnose?
Measuring T3, T4, TSH levels in the blood, Thyroid Ultrasonography and Neck CT scan are sometimes used to determine whether the nodules are active or not, cystic or solid. Biopsy may be performed to diagnose the nodules when necessary.
The treatment of thyroid nodules is decided according to the structure of the nodule. Sometimes, surgical treatments can be used in hyperthyroidism that cannot be controlled with drugs, in cases with clinical signs of compression, when there is suspicion of malignancy in biopsies, when radiological malignancy is suspected, and when the biopsy result is malignant.