The thyroid gland is a butterfly-shaped endocrine gland that is normally located in the lower front of the neck. The thyroid’s job is to make thyroid hormones, which are secreted into the blood and then carried to every tissue in the body. Thyroid hormone helps the body use energy, stay warm and keep the brain, heart, muscles, and other organs working as they should.
The most common reason for thyroid surgery is to remove a thyroid nodule, which has been found to be suspicious through a fine needle aspiration biopsy. Surgery may be recommended for the following biopsy results:
- Cancer (papillary cancer)
- Possible cancer (follicular neoplasm or atypical findings)
- Inconclusive biopsy
- Molecular marker testing of biopsy specimen which indicates a risk for malignancy
In general, thyroid surgery is best performed by a surgeon who has received special training and who performs thyroid surgery on a regular basis. The complication rate of thyroid operations is lower when the operation is done by a surgeon who does a considerable number of thyroid operations each year. Patients should ask their referring physician where he or she would go to have a thyroid operation or where he or she would send a family member.
Dr. Shikani and Dr. Todd-Hesham have extensive experience in surgical management of thyroid and parathyroid conditions. They work closely with endocrinologists to provide up-to-date counseling, treatment, and management of patients.