Thyroid Nodules

Ana Maria Kausel, MD

Endocrinology located in Chelsea, New York, NY

If you notice swelling at the base of your neck or if a scan for an unrelated reason reveals thyroid nodules, contact Ana Maria Kausel, MD. At her practice, Ana Maria Kausel MD Endocrinology, in Chelsea, New York City, Dr. Kausel assesses your nodules and your risk of thyroid cancer before offering customized treatments to restore your health. Call Dr. Kausel or make an appointment online today.

Thyroid Nodules Q & A

What are thyroid nodules?

Thyroid nodules are growths that form on your thyroid. They’re typically either abnormal tissue or fluid-filled sacs that create a lump on your neck. Thyroid nodules are very common — around half of people over the age of 60 have thyroid nodules. In most cases, thyroid nodules are benign, although in rare cases they can progress into thyroid cancer.

What are the symptoms of thyroid nodules?

You may have thyroid nodules and not have any noticeable symptoms. However, you may also develop a lump on the base of your neck, or your voice may change or become hoarse. Thyroid nodules can also affect your thyroid function and cause symptoms, including:

  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Increased sweating
  • Tremors
  • Nervousness
  • Insomnia
  • Irregular or rapid heartbeat

You should make an appointment with Dr. Kausel if you have any of these symptoms, especially if you have a personal or family history of thyroid disorders.

What causes thyroid nodules?

Many factors contribute to the development of thyroid nodules. For example, something as simple as an iodine deficiency can cause nodule growth. Chronic thyroiditis or an enlarged thyroid gland can also trigger nodule development. Other causes of thyroid nodules include:

  • Overgrowth of thyroid tissue
  • Degenerating thyroid adenomas and cysts
  • Thyroid cancer

Regardless of the cause of your thyroid nodules, it’s critical to get a diagnosis and treatment from a board-certified endocrinologist like Dr. Kausel. Untreated thyroid nodules can lead to complications, including having trouble swallowing or breathing and hyperthyroidism.

How are thyroid nodules diagnosed?

In addition to a physical exam, Dr. Kausel uses a variety of tests to diagnose thyroid nodules. For example, some of the tests she may order include:

  • Thyroid function tests
  • Radioactive iodine thyroid scans
  • Ultrasounds
  • Fine-needle aspiration biopsy

Dr. Kausel uses these tests to confirm the presence of thyroid nodules as well as determining the type of nodule.

How are thyroid nodules treated?

Dr. Kausel offers customized treatments for thyroid nodules depending on the type of nodule and how it’s impacting your health. While no single treatment works for everyone, Dr. Kausel is committed to providing the treatment you need to restore your health.

For example, if you have a small, benign nodule, she may recommend waiting and monitoring the growth. Alternatively, she may recommend thyroid hormone suppression therapy or surgery to remove the nodule. If your nodule is stimulating thyroid hyperactivity, Dr. Kausel may recommend anti-thyroid medications, radioactive iodine, or surgery.

If you’re concerned about thyroid nodules, call Dr. Kausel or make an appointment online today.