General

Goiter – Causes and Risk Factors

My whole world was turned upside down based on a word someone used to describe an enlarged thyroid gland, a goiter.  After the first mention of that word, I ran to the first mirror I could find to see what they were talking about.  Only to see something that I never noticed throughout my day to day life.

What is a goiter exactly ?

It’s clinically described as an abnormal enlargement of the thyroid gland.

What causes an an abnormal enlargement ?

For some it’s lack of iodine in the diet, for others it could be Graves Disease, Hasimoto’s, a single nodule that presents as overall enlargement, multiple nodules, inflammation, pregnancy or the worst cause of all Thyroid Cancer.  With so many variables it could be really stressful to even begin to think what is causing it for you personally.

Enlarged Thyroid Gland Showing the Comparison of the Size of a Normal Gland

What sorts of things put you at risk of developing a goiter ?

Again lack of iodine in the diet, being female (women are more prone to thyroid disorders in general), age, family medical history, pregnancy, menopause, certain medications and radiation exposure.

Not only are there variations for the abnormal enlargement but also several reasons for the occurrence.  In my case family medical history that I wasn’t aware of and well gosh darn it, I’m female of all things.

I hope that this post was helpful in some way and absolutely feel free to reach out if you have any questions.

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