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Why Would You Have Your Thyroid Removed

Recuperation Time And Restrictions

STOP…before you have your THYROID removed, WATCH this video!

Most people are advised to take roughly two weeks off from work to recuperate, depending on their occupation. You should not drive as long as you continue to need pain medications, and some surgeons recommend abstaining from driving for the first week after surgery altogether.

You should also avoid any heavy lifting or strenuous activities for a few weeks. The excess activity could increase your chance of developing a hematoma or keep your wound from healing properly. Light housekeeping and walking are usually fine once you arrive home.

What Will Be My Physical Restrictions Following Surgery

Most surgeons prefer that patients limit extreme physical activities following surgery for a few days or weeks. This is primarily to reduce the risk of a postoperative neck hematoma and breaking of stitches in the wound closure. These limitations are brief, usually followed by a quick transition back to unrestricted activity. Normal activity can begin on the first postoperative day. Vigorous sports, such as swimming, and activities that include heavy lifting should be delayed for at least ten days to 2 weeks.

How Will You Partner With The Rest Of My Medical Team

After surgery, youll likely need monitoring of your thyroid hormone levels and, in the case of thyroid cancer, follow-up treatment and testing. You want to know that the people taking care of different aspects of your thyroid disease or thyroid cancer are working together and communicating as a team, said Sosa. At Duke, weve created a clinic where you, your surgeon and your endocrinologist can meet at the same time, in the same place.

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Why Is A Thyroidectomy Performed

Your doctor may recommend a thyroidectomy to treat a variety of diseases, disorders and conditions of the thyroid. Your doctor may only consider a thyroidectomy for you if other treatment options with less risk of complications have been ineffective. Ask your doctor about all of your treatment options and consider getting a second opinion before having a thyroidectomy.

Your doctor may recommend a thyroidectomy for:

  • Benign thyroid tumors, nodules or cysts

  • or an enlarged thyroid gland. Surgery may be recommended for a goiter that interferes with breathing and swallowing.

  • when radioactive iodine and medications are not options

  • Thyroid cancer

  • Thyrotoxicosis, also called thyroid crisis or thyroid storm, is a sudden worsening of hyperthyroidism that can be life threatening.

Complications Of Thyroid Gland Surgery

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Surgery to remove some or all of the thyroid gland is usually safe, but as with all operations, there’s a risk of complications.

The risk of complications happening after thyroid gland surgery is estimated to be 1 to 2 in 100.

Before having the surgery, discuss the risks with your surgeon.

Infection, nerve damage and parathyroid gland damage are the main complications of thyroid gland surgery.

Infection

As with all surgery, there’s a risk of infection after thyroid surgery.

Nerve damage

The thyroid gland is very close to the laryngeal nerves, which control your vocal cords.

If these are accidentally damaged during surgery, your voice and breathing could be affected.

Permanent damage to the laryngeal nerves affects 1 to 2 people in every 100 who have this type of surgery.

Temporary damage may affect up to 5 people in every 100.

Parathyroid gland damage

The parathyroid glands are tiny glands behind the thyroid. They help regulate the amount of calcium in your body.

If the parathyroid glands are damaged during thyroid surgery, you’ll probably need to take calcium supplements for the rest of your life.

Page last reviewed: 15 April 2019 Next review due: 15 April 2022

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What Can I Expect After My Thyroidectomy

Knowing what to expect can help make your road to recovery after a thyroidectomy as smooth as possible.

How long will it take to recover?

You will stay in the recovery room after surgery until you are alert, breathing effectively, and your vital signs are stable. You may have a if a tube was placed in your windpipe during surgery. This is usually temporary, but tell your care team if you are uncomfortable.

You may go home on the same day if you are recovering well and can swallow liquids. A hospital stay of one to two days may be required in some cases.

Recovery after surgery is a gradual process. Recovery time varies depending on the procedure, type of anesthesia, your general health, age, and other factors. Full recovery takes two to four weeks.

Will I feel pain?

Pain control is important for healing and a smooth recovery. There will be discomfort after your surgery. Your doctor will treat your pain so you are comfortable and can get the rest you need. Call your doctor if your pain gets worse or changes because it may be a sign of a complication.

When should I call my doctor?

It is important to keep your follow-up appointments after a thyroidectomy. Contact your doctor for questions and concerns between appointments. Call your doctor right away or seek immediate medical care if you have:

  • Bleeding

Risks And Side Effects Of Thyroid Surgery

Complications are less likely to happen when your operation is done by an experienced thyroid surgeon. Patients who have thyroid surgery are often ready to leave the hospital within a day after the operation. Potential complications of thyroid surgery include:

  • Temporary or permanent hoarseness or loss of voice. This can happen if the larynx or windpipe is irritated by the breathing tube that was used during surgery. It may also occur if the nerves to the larynx are damaged during surgery. The doctor should examine your vocal cords before surgery to see if they move normally.
  • Damage to the parathyroid glands . This can lead to low blood calcium levels, causing muscle spasms and feelings of numbness and tingling.
  • Excessive bleeding or formation of a major blood clot in the neck
  • Infection

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What Should I Expect After A Partial Thyroidectomy

Tell your healthcare providers if you have difficulty breathing or swallowing. Tell them if your bandage feels like it is getting tighter. You will have blood tests to check your calcium and thyroid hormone blood levels.

  • Medicine may be given to bring your thyroid hormone level back to normal. A partial thyroidectomy means your thyroid gland can produce some thyroid hormone. You may need to take medicine daily to keep your thyroid hormone level steady. You may be given pain medicine after surgery. Radioactive iodine may be given if your thyroid gland was removed because of cancer. This medicine may kill cancer cells that were not taken out during surgery.
  • Deep breathing helps open air passages and prevent a lung infection. Slowly take a deep breath and hold the breath as long as you can. Then let your breath out. Take 10 deep breaths in a row every hour while awake. You may be asked to use an incentive spirometer to help you with this. Put the plastic piece into your mouth and slowly take a breath as deep and as long as you can. Hold it as long as you can. Then let your breath out.

What Are The Risks Of A Partial Thyroidectomy

Reasons why you still have thyroid symptoms: #5 Thyroid removed? What can be done?

You may bleed more than expected and need a blood transfusion. Your voice may be hoarse or weak after surgery, and this may become a long-term problem. Your neck may be bruised and swollen, and it may be hard for you to breathe or swallow. Your parathyroid glands may not work as well as they should after surgery. This can cause your calcium levels to drop too low. Low calcium levels can cause many problems, including an irregular heartbeat, muscle spasms, and seizures. This may be a short-term problem after surgery, or it may be a long-term problem.

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So When Should You Be Concerned About Thyroid Nodules

Like I mentioned a moment ago, most of the time these nodules dont lead to any serious problems. However some doctors like doing surgery and in cases where there are multiple nodules, many will suggest removing the entire gland because its easier to remove the entire gland rather than remove individual nodules. In my opinion there are really only a few situations when surgery should be recommended to remove a thyroid nodule:

#1 should be pretty obviously- When the thyroid nodule is cancerous. Obviously if the nodule is malignant, then this would be the best and most justifiable reason to have it removed. Fortunately, only about 5% to 10% of nodules are malignant.

#2. When the thyroid nodule is shifting or compressing the esophagus/trachea or the larynx. Sometimes when the nodule has gotten so big it can shift the larynx or your voice box causing inflammation leading to a change in your voice, difficulty with speaking or just that feeling of being tired and hoarse. If the nodule shifts the trachea to the side you can experience difficulty with swallowing or breathing- So be aware of these symptoms as well.

The last thing I wanted to cover in todays video, are the two tests you should have done if nodules are identified. If your doctor has not run these tests, its critical that they are run. These tests identify whether or not you have an autoimmune disease

What Does The Thyroid Gland Do

The thyroid, located at the base of your neck, makes a hormone that is sent into your bloodstream. The thyroid hormone controls the speed of your metabolism. The thyroid gland makes this hormone from iodine. Iodine is absorbed from the foods we eat.

The pituitary gland controls how much thyroid hormone to make. It does this by making thyroid stimulating hormone . TSH tells the thyroid gland to make more or less thyroid hormone.

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Thyroid Removal Side Effects: What Happens When Thyroid Is Removed

Thyroid gland is a part of the endocrine system which helps our body regulates the metabolism. It is a butterfly-shaped gland located inside the front of the lower neck. Under certain conditions, doctors may advise an individual for thyroid removal or thyroid gland removal which requires the surgery to remove all or a part of the gland. Usually thyroid removal is done so as to treat small thyroid growth or nodules/cyst, or in case of thyroid cancer, or if a person has an overactive thyroid gland which may be dangerous, etc. Though thyroid surgery is generally considered safe by most doctors, at times patients undergoing the surgery may experience some kind side effects after thyroid removal. In this current article of ours, we will talk about what happens when thyroid is removed. We will also talk about few of the tips to cope up from the side effects of thyroid removal procedure. Hope this would be a beneficial read for you.

What Problems Can Occur With The Thyroid Gland

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Hypothyroidism: An under-active thyroid is called hypothyroidism. The thyroid produces less thyroxine. This makes the pituitary gland send more TSH into the bloodstream to get the thyroid gland to make more hormone.

Common symptoms of hypothyroidism include:

  • Weight gain
  • Dry skin, hair, and nails
  • Feeling tired

Hyperthyroidism: An over-active thyroid is called hyperthyroidism. The thyroid gland makes too much thyroid hormone. The pituitary gland decreases the amount of TSH in the blood.

Common symptoms of hyperthyroidism include:

  • Heat intolerance
  • Losing weight without dieting
  • Muscle weakness, fatigue

Nodules: Thyroid nodules can be either solid or cystic . Most of the time, your thyroid works normally if you have nodules. Most nodules are not cancerous. However, your doctor might take a sample of the cells in the nodule. This is called a fine needle aspiration. This sample will be examined to make sure there are no cancer cells.

Goiter: This is an enlargement of the thyroid gland. You might feel swelling or enlargement in the neck. It can become larger because your thyroid is trying to make more thyroid hormone. Also, in hyperthyroidism the cells grow faster, which causes the thyroid to grow and make more thyroid hormone than the body needs.

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Wound Infection May Be A Possibility On Removal Of Thyroid

Though unusual in most cases, yet there may be wound infection after the thyroid removal surgery. It is essential to prevent any infection once you are at home after the surgery. Below are some of the things you need to keep a note after the surgery so as to prevent self from wound infection.

  • Leave you dressings in place unless your doctor tells to remove them
  • Keep your neck wound clean and dry till it gets totally healed.
  • Do not go swimming till your wound is healed completely
  • Do not put pressure on the wound.

Are There Other Means Of Treatment

Surgery is definitely indicated to remove nodules suspicious for thyroid cancer. In the absence of a possibility of thyroid cancer, there may be nonsurgical options for therapy depending on your diagnosis. You should discuss other options for treatment with your physician who has expertise in thyroid diseases.

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So What Do You Need To Know About Thyroid Nodules

In todays video, I want to share with you some of the symptoms that nodules may cause but, I want to share with you 5 reasons when you should be concerned about Thyroid nodules and I want to talk about 2 blood tests you should have done If your doctor identified that you do have nodules.

First off, Thyroid nodules are incredibly common and in fact most woman age 50 have at least one thyroid nodule. It is also known that as you get older, the incidence of thyroid nodules increase.

The other thing about nodules is that they can be solid or fluid-filled lumps sometimes felt in the neck.

If they are fluid filled, this is called a thyroid cyst and they are almost always benign.

Most of the time, thyroid nodules do not cause signs or symptoms unless these nodules begin to produce additional thyroxine, a hormone secreted by your thyroid gland.

Thyroid Removal When You Need To Be Concerned About Thyroid Nodules

Why I Had My Thyroid Removed

May 24, 2019// by Dr Hagmeyer

So you have been having low thyroid symptoms and the visit to your doctor ended up where your doctor determined that you have thyroid nodules, if you are like most people that news was probably pretty scary. Thoughts of cancer or having to have your thyroid removed may have raced through your mind. The good news is that the vast majority are not cancerous, but that does not mean you should take this news lightly.

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You Have A Large Growth Or Goiter

Growths and goiters are very different thyroid issues. If you have an abnormal growth on your thyroid, it can be a solid or fluid-filled nodule or a cyst. A goiter, on the other hand, develops when your thyroid itself becomes enlarged.

While nodules, cysts, and goiters typically arent cause for concern, they can become so large that they cause uncomfortable symptoms, including:

  • A visible or unsightly mass in your neck
  • Coughing or hoarseness
  • Pain in your neck or throat

In some cases, large growths and goiters can also make it hard to breathe.

T4 Therapy Does Not Always Normalize Free Thyroid Hormone Levels

The study I want to focus on for this article can be found here .

Among the many important points illustrated by this study is the fact that it showed a certain sub-group of patients without a thyroid are not able to maintain normal free thyroid hormone concentrations with T4 only thyroid medication.

If this sounds confusing to you, don’t worry because we are going to break it down into simple to understand terms.

As a patient without a thyroid, you are probably aware that you need to be on thyroid medication for the rest of your life.

The medication you are probably taking is either levothyroxine or Synthroid as these are the most commonly prescribed medications to treat this condition.

Both levothyroxine and Synthroid contain thyroid hormone but they only contain T4 which is considered the inactive thyroid hormone.

This study showed that up to 20% of patients without a thyroid who are taking these medications are not able to reach the normal healthy levels of thyroid hormone seen in normal controls.

And this promotes a big problem, especially for the 20% of people who fit into this category.

It means that this sub-group of patients will likely experience persistent symptoms of hypothyroidism despite being treated “adequately”.

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How Do I Select A Surgeon

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 large 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.

Signs You Might Need Thyroid Surgery

Why Your Thyroid Test May Be Wrong!

    Its hard to believe that something as small as your thyroid can play such an important role in your body. But, even though its only the size of your thumb, your thyroid produces hormones triiodothyronine and thyroxine . T3 and T4 reach almost every cell in your system and control several of your bodily functions, including:

    • Body temperature
    • Central and peripheral nervous system
    • Bodyweight and muscle strength

    Because your thyroid plays such a crucial role in how your body works, you experience a wide range of unpleasant symptoms when it malfunctions. These types of issues can occur for several reasons, ranging from thyroid diseases to benign or cancerous growths.

    At Desert West Surgery, our experienced surgeons specialize in treating a wide range of health conditions at our three convenient locations in Las Vegas. If you have thyroid problems, these issues could indicate the need for surgery.

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