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When should I call my doctor if I have thyroid nodules?

If you believe you have felt a lump (nodule) on your thyroid, please call your doctor to set up an appointment as soon as possible. A lump that you can feel requires testing. A thyroid ultrasound can confirm it is a nodule. A blood test will be done to check the function of your thyroid.
If you have thyroid nodules (lumps of abnormal cells in the thyroid gland in your neck) you should call your doctor right away to have them evaluated. Although most thyroid nodules are noncancerous, the only way to tell for certain is to see your doctor for an evaluation. Even noncancerous thyroid nodules can cause problems with the thyroid gland and/or problems with normal breathing and swallowing, and so should be evaluated by your doctor.

Your doctor will likely perform a physical examination, and may order other diagnostic tests, including blood tests to determine how well your thyroid gland is functioning, ultrasonography and possibly a thyroid biopsy.

Call your doctor if you experience any of these symptoms of thyroid nodules:
  • swelling in your neck for more than two weeks
  • a hoarse or scratchy voice that is not caused by a cold or throat infection and lasts longer than one month
  • difficulty swallowing
  • symptoms of a thyroid problem such as feeling tired, weak, or nervous, losing weight, having trouble sleeping, or having a fast heartbeat
If you have had part of your thyroid gland removed because of noncancerous thyroid nodules, you will need regular medical checkups to make sure your thyroid gland is working well.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.