Many cases of the above-described diseases are accompanied by an enlarged thyroid gland, that is, the patient develops a goiter of the thyroid gland. What it is, what signs of increase, how it hurts and how the enlarged iron looks, how to test it, whether there can be coughing and choking and other negative symptoms, we will analyze below.
In post-Soviet countries, by the way it looks like thyroid thyroid it is common to divide it into: nodal (the appearance of nodes in the gland), diffuse (uniformly enlarged gland), and diffusive-nodular (mixed).
At various pathologies the mechanism of an increase in a thyroid gland, signs and treatment differ. The cause of goiter may be hypertrophy of the thyroid gland, which develops as a result of iodine deficiency, or an increased need of the organism for secreted thyroid hormones (for example, during pregnancy). In some cases, the symptoms of an increase in the thyroid gland are noted with its hyperfunction, with the formation of a so-called diffuse toxic goiter. Also, goiter may accompany the development of inflammation of this organ or the formation of its tumor.
An increase in the thyroid gland in childhood occurs for the same reasons as in adults, but requires a more attentive attitude and immediate treatment. As mentioned above, an enlarged thyroid gland in children may signal a deficiency in the production of thyroid hormones, which is fraught with a slowdown in growth and a mental retardation. In this regard, parents who have noticed any increase in the size of the thyroid in a child are obliged to immediately consult a pediatrician and consult with an endocrinologist.
Modern medicine uses several classifications of this pathology and in one of them (according to AV Nikolaev) there are five degrees of enlargement of the thyroid gland:
1 st degree – there is an increase in the neck of the thyroid gland, which is clearly visible when swallowing and is palpable;
2 nd degree – there is an increase in both the isthmus and the thyroid lobes, which are clearly visible when swallowed and are clearly palpable;
3rd degree – the thyroid patient completely fills the anterior cervical region, smooths the outline of the neck and is visible at visual examination (“thick” neck);
4 th degree – the thyroid gland is significantly enlarged, the symptoms from the neck are manifested by a significant change in its shape, the goiter is clearly visible in a visual examination;
5-th degree – a characteristic huge goiter disfiguring the neck and squeezing her organs and vessels; when the trachea and larynx are squeezed, the patient has a cough, it becomes difficult for him to breathe, up to choking with the thyroid gland; when squeezing the esophagus there is a difficulty in swallowing, first with respect to solid food, and subsequently liquids; when jamming the vessels, noise in the ears, dizziness, sleep / memory disorders and even loss of consciousness are possible; when the pressure on the nerve trunks develops a chronic pain syndrome.
Another WHO classification of goiter is simplified, specifically designed to facilitate comparative analysis of epidemiological studies, consists of only three degrees and notes which signs of thyroid disease and symptoms of euthyroidism (thyroid enlargement without changes in the level of its hormones) or thyroid pathologies (hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism) are observed at the moment:
0-th degree – an increase in thyroid (formation of goiter) is not noted;
1 st degree – the development of goiter is not detectable visually, but can be palpated, with the palpable thyroid lobes exceeding the size of the extreme phalanx of the thumb on the patient’s arm;
2 nd degree – the formed goiter is clearly palpable and visible visually.