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Thyroid Surgery

The Thyroid Gland is a small gland located in the front of the neck, often weighing less than an ounce. This small gland is made up of two halves called lobes, and they lie along the trachea (windpipe). The lobes are joined together by a narrow band of thyroid tissue known as the isthmus.

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The function of the thyroid is to absorb iodine (found in many foods) and to convert it into thyroid hormones: thyroxine (T4) and triiodothyronine (T3). Every cell in the body depends upon thyroid hormones for the regulation and metabolism of many body processes. A normal thyroid gland produces about 80% of the hormone, thyroxine (T4), and 20% of triiodothyronine (T3). Your physician may order blood tests to check the levels of the hormones. This can be an indication of whether the thyroid gland is working properly.

There are many reasons that Thyroid Surgery (thyroidectomy) may be necessary. A thyroidectomy is used to treat thyroid nodules, thyroid cancer, goiter (enlargement of the thyroid), and sometimes other disorders of the thyroid. A goiter is a noncancerous enlargement of the gland that may cause blockage of the windpipe and esophagus. In this procedure, a part or all of the thyroid gland is removed.

Your surgeon will evaluate your specific thyroid problem to identify the best treatment option for you. Many times this may involve coordinated care with an endocrinologist.