The Thyroid Gland
The thyroid is a butterfly-shaped gland located in the neck area across the windpipe and below the Adam’s apple. It is a part of the endocrine system and releases hormones essential to the body’s functions. It secretes a hormone that specifically regulates metabolic functions or the production of energy in your body. The thyroid also affects growth development and reproduction.
Signs of an Unhealthy Thyroid
When it is healthy, the gland is not visible and cannot be felt through the neck. Signs your thyroid is not healthy and functioning properly include fatigue, weight gain or loss, changes in heart rate, changes in energy or mood, hair loss, feeling too hot or cold, muscle problems, trembling and goiters.
Your doctor will look for an enlarged thyroid and prescribe a blood test that measures the thyroid hormone in your blood to diagnose a thyroid condition. These conditions can be treated with medication, but some may require surgery. If the cause of thyroid problems is cancer, treatment includes surgery and possible radiation therapy.
An otolaryngologist can diagnose and treat problems with the thyroid such as thyroid swelling or goiters, overactive thyroid, underactive thyroid or thyroid cancer. If you or someone you care for is experiencing symptoms of a thyroid problem, please contact our North Sioux City office at (605) 217-4327 to schedule an appointment.