At the bottom of your throat, you have a small butterfly-shaped gland known as your thyroid. It releases hormones that can regulate various bodily functions, which include your energy consumption rate. There are many functions that thyroid hormones influence and they play a significant role in your overall health.
Until something goes wrong with the thyroid, most people have no idea what it does. Both non-surgical and surgical treatment options are available to treat thyroid issues. The surgical treatment involves the removal of thyroid tissue. Surgery is not always necessary to treat thyroid problems. Depending on your condition, your doctor will recommend a treatment option. Understanding what thyroid surgery entails and why you may need it is important if you’ve been suggested to undergo thyroid surgery. Sometimes you may need it to protect your future health.
The surgical procedure to treat thyroid disorders is called a thyroidectomy, which involves partially or completely removing your thyroid gland. The portion of your thyroid gland removal during the surgery is based on the reason for the surgery. If only a portion of your thyroid is removed, it is called a partial thyroidectomy, and your thyroid gland might work as usual following the surgery. If the entire thyroid gland is removed during the surgery, it is called a total thyroidectomy. To carry out the functions carried by the hormones, you need to consume certain medicines daily to replace the natural function of your thyroid gland.
When Surgery Is Appropriate
The best treatment for hyperthyroidism that provides immediate relief is a total thyroidectomy. Even though a surgical removal (thyroidectomy) is not the most popular way to manage hyperthyroidism, there are some situations where it is the best course of action.
A tiny proportion of patients are resistant to radioactive iodine, and others have allergies to anti-thyroid medicines. Even if you can handle radioactive iodine or drugs physically, you are free to choose other treatment options if you feel uncomfortable with the therapy. When it comes to treatment, your preferences matter.
Another situation where surgery becomes an effective treatment is when a hot nodule causes hyperthyroidism.
A hot nodule often referred to as a toxic nodule, is a condition that causes excess production of thyroid hormone. This is because it overcomes the signals of the pituitary gland to stop the production of thyroid hormone. This is the reason why hyperthyroidism develops in the first place. In some cases, the surgeon will be able to remove the lobe containing the hot nodule, depending on its’ location. This preserves the portion of your thyroid gland, which is typically necessary to provide your body with a sufficient supply of hormones.
A total thyroidectomy is also suggested in cases of hyperthyroidism if the thyroid gland becomes enlarged, contains nodules that could be cancerous, or exhibits substantial ophthalmopathy (eye changes) abnormalities that come with Graves’ disease.
Thyroid conditions that require surgery
Some thyroid conditions can have a permanent solution through surgery.
The primary cause of thyroid amputation is cancer. Most likely, a major portion or complete removal of the thyroid gland is the best treatment option available if you have thyroid cancer.
Goiter is one of the noncancerous conditions where your gland enlarges and can be treated with thyroidectomy. Removing the thyroid gland partially or completely is optional if you have a large goiter that makes you uncomfortable. It completely depends on the severity of the condition, i.e., goiter sometimes causes breathing problems or makes it difficult to swallow, or leads to hyperthyroidism.
Overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism)
It is also called Graves’ disease. An overactive thyroid gland produces excessive amounts of thyroxine, resulting in hyperthyroidism. This condition is usually treated with anti-thyroid drugs and radioactive iodine therapy. If the treatment has no effective results or if you are not comfortable with these treatments, thyroidectomy might be a viable option.
Indeterminate thyroid nodules.
Thyroid nodules develop on your thyroid gland characterized by solid or liquid-filled lumps. Most of the time, they may not cause trouble. But sometimes, the nodules become enlarged and press over structures in the neck like the trachea causing complications. Some thyroid nodules are difficult to diagnose, whether they are cancerous or noncancerous, in the initial stages of their development. If the doctors suspect these nodules have a higher risk of becoming cancerous, they may recommend thyroidectomy.
However, treating thyroid problems solely depends on the severity of your condition. As part of the consultation, your surgeon lets you know how much tissue is removed during the surgery. During the consultation, you can ask questions about your concerns.
To know about the treatment options for your thyroid problem, contact Dr. V Pareek, one of the best doctors to treat thyroid disorders in Hyderabad. To get started with your consultation, call +91 91-777-77715, or book your appointment online.