What are the Symptoms and Causes of Thyroid Gland Enlargement?

The thyroid is a tiny and very important gland of the human body.

  • It is located in the frontal area of the neck. Moreover, it has many functions in the body which includes the regulation of:
  1. Metabolism
  2. cell’s chemical processes
  3. food conversion processes
  4. oxygen usage in the body and
  5. hormones
  • The thyroid is responsible in the manufacture and release of hormones in the body.
  • There are two types of hormones released by the thyroid which are called:
  1. thyroxine and
  2. triiodothyronine.
  • However, the thyroid can also be vulnerable to diseases. When these occur, it only means the entire body is affected.

What are the Symptoms of Enlarging Thyroid Gland

Swelling and Dizziness

  • The primary symptom of thyroid enlargement is swelling.
  • This is due mainly to the increase in size of the thyroid.
  • In serious cases, the swelling is pronounced. The size of it may vary from a tiny nodule to a huge lump in the neck.
  • The swollen thyroid compresses the wind pipe as well as the esophagus which results to coughing and breathing difficulties.
  • Swelling in the veins of the neck can block the veins blood flow to the brain. This will cause the person to feel light-headed whenever the arms are brought above the head.

Wheezing and Swallowing Problems

  • Wheezing is a breathing difficulty that is accompanied by a whistling sound during exhalation.
  • The whistling sound is due to the narrowing of the wind pipe that is caused by the enlarged gland.
  • This symptom is commonly seen in patients with Asthma.
  • As mentioned earlier in this article, the enlarged thyroid puts pressure in the esophagus, sometimes called the “channel for eating.”
  • When this happens, the individual also experience problems in swallowing.
  • If the individual has no other throat problems, it would be better to consult a physician.

Pain in the Joints

  • When an individual have thyroid diseases, one common symptom is joint pains.
  • There is muscle pain, weakness, fatigue and muscle cramps in the hands and legs.
    In severe cases, tendonitis can occur.

What are the Causes of Thyroid Gland Enlargement

Thyroid enlargement can be a result of so many different things or diseases. Here are some of the factors that cause an increase in thyroid size:

  • Goiter- is a type of thyroid enlargement. Due to its enlarged size it is already visible in the neck area and in ultrasound and x-ray results.

Symptoms are:

  1. Coughing and difficulty in breathing due to the pressure on the esophagus and the wind pipe.
  2. Sensitive to touch.
  • Hyperthyroidism- is characterized by the increased production of hormones.
  1. It is most common in women aged 20 to 40 years old.
  2. Men are no exceptions to this disorder.
  • Hypothyroidism- is the exact reverse of hyperthyroidism. With hypothyroidism there is the decrease in the hormone production.

Symptoms include:

  1. Weight gain
  2. Tired and feels cold.
  3. Heart rate is slow.
  4. For women, it causes heavy menstruation.
  5. For men, it causes erectile dysfunction.

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