Thyroid Goiter Basics

What They Look Like and How to Treat Them

This slideshow covers the basics of thyroid goiters—an enlargement of the thyroid gland. Some goiters can become so large that you can easily see them when you turn to the side. But are they typically benign? And who gets goiters, and how do you treat them?

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The Main Causes of Thyroid Goiters

The Main Causes of Thyroid Goiters

Iodine Deficiency and Autoimmune Disorders

Worldwide, the most common cause of thyroid goiter is iodine deficiency, but in the US, that's pretty rare because there's iodine in our drinking water and some of the foods we eat, such as table salt. Hashimoto's thyroiditis and Graves' disease—2 autoimmune disorders—are much more common causes of thyroid goiters in the US. Thyroid nodules can also cause goiters.
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