A thyroid medicine specialist or endocrinologist deals with disorders of the thyroid. The thyroid gland sits on either side of the neck under the Adam’s apple and is part of the endocrine system. The thyroid utilizes iodine from the diet to secrete hormones into the bloodstream that regulate the metabolism. Issues with the thyroid can develop slowly over time. Thyroid disorders can include an overactive gland, called hyperthyroidism, or an underactive gland, called hypothyroidism. Both can result in an enlarged thyroid gland. A thyroid nodule is a small swelling or lump in the thyroid gland. Sometimes surgery is required to remove the thyroid. Surgeries are performed by a head and neck surgeon or otolaryngologist.
Sometimes the thyroid is fully or partially removed for cancer treatment or enlargement of the gland. This procedure is called a thyroidectomy. After removal the patient is on thyroid replacement medication for life.
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