If you experience heart palpitations, unexplained weight gain or loss, and/or heat and cold intolerance, you may have a thyroid disease or thyroid hormone disorder.
The thyroid gland is a small butterfly-shaped gland located at the base of your neck, just below your Adam’s apple. It produces thyroid hormone, which helps regulate your body’s metabolism in many ways.
Symptoms of Thyroid Dysfunction
In addition to producing hormones that regulate your body's metabolic rate, the thyroid gland regulates heart and digestive function, muscle control, brain development, mood, and bone mass.
Excessive production of thyroid hormone (hyperthyroidism) can cause:
- Excessive sweating
- Rapid heart rate/palpitations
- Weight loss
- Heat intolerance
- Nervousness, agitation, anxiety
Conversely, an under-active thyroid gland (hypothyroidism) can result in:
- Weight gain
- Cold intolerance
- Dry skin
- Muscle weakness
- Puffy face
At Northwest ENT and Allergy Center, we offer both surgical and non-surgical options for treating thyroid disorders.
A thyroid nodule is a growth in the thyroid gland. Thyroid nodules are extremely common and may be solitary or multiple (multinodular goiter).
Thyroid Treatment Options
When is thyroid surgery necessary?
The primary indications for thyroidectomy include the suspicion of cancer, large size, or concerning symptoms, such as throat pressure, difficulty swallowing, respiratory distress, or cosmetic disfigurement (from a visible goiter).
An endoscopic thyroidectomy is a minimally-invasive thyroid surgery that can dramatically reduce the size of your neck incision/s and speed up recovery.
An experienced surgeon works through an incision about one-third the size of a normal incision with the assistance of video cameras and slender instruments. Due to the specialized tools and approach involved, not all practices in the area offer this procedure.
A conventional thyroidectomy is an operation that removes part or all of your thyroid gland. The three most common types of thyroidectomy:
- Total - removes the entire thyroid gland
- Subtotal - removes most of the gland
- Hemi - removes one lobe of the gland
The extent of the operation depends upon the nature and extent of the pathology.
Ethanol Ablation of Thyroid Cysts
Some patients have large cystic nodules that can be treated with Ethanol Ablation rather than a thyroidectomy. Ethanol, which is similar to drinking alcohol, has been shown to permanently reduce the size of cystic nodules.
Northwest ENT and Allergy Center is one of the few ENT centers in the country that offer this treatment method for large cystic nodules.
Radiofrequency Ablation of Thyroid Nodules
Dr. Shatul Parikh at Northwest ENT and Allergy Center offers a new technology for the management of benign thyroid nodules called Radiofrequency Ablation (RFA). Radiofrequency ablation is a safe and effective technique that has been used in healthcare for decades to shrink unwanted tissue. Today we perform radiofrequency ablation of a thyroid nodule as an alternative to help patients avoid surgery.
With thousands of patient experiences in Korea, Brazil, and Europe, RFA has been shown to shrink a thyroid nodule up to 80 percent.
Radiofrequency ablation of a thyroid nodule is a 20-minute procedure performed under local anesthesia. Patients can expect to feel a similar level of pain or discomfort as they would after a regular thyroid needle biopsy. In most cases, patients can go home the same day and resume regular activity the day after.