The thyroid gland is a butterfly shaped gland situated in the lower part of neck. It produces thyroid hormones, which help to regulate the body’s metabolism. Normally the thyroid gland cannot be seen or felt, but it can become enlarged for various reasons, an enlarged thyroid gland is also known as a thyroid goitre. Lumps of the thyroid are usually cysts or nodules. The majority of these do not cause any problems, but some can give local symptoms such as pressure or discomfort. Only a small number turn out to be a thyroid cancer.

Thyroid lumps can be found when feeling the neck or incidentally on imaging scans. Most will require assessment with an ultrasound scan and some will need further testing with a needle biopsy. Depending on the results from these tests some lumps will not need treatment, others may require monitoring or removal with surgery.

 

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