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Southern ENT & Sinus Center

Otolaryngologists located in Birmingham, AL

Ongoing hoarseness, a lump or swelling at the base of your neck, and difficulty swallowing are signs of a potential thyroid problem that may need a thyroidectomy. D. Trent Lowery, MD, David Walters, MD, Matthew Fort, MD, and the team at Southern ENT & Sinus Center in Birmingham, Alabama, have performed many successful thyroidectomies, using precise surgical skills that come from years of experience. If you need treatment for a thyroid problem, call the office or book an appointment online today.

Thyroidectomy Q &. A

What is thyroidectomy?

A thyroidectomy is a surgical procedure to remove all or part of your thyroid gland. Your thyroid gland, which is at the base of your neck, produces hormones that regulate your metabolism and many other essential body functions. 

For example, your thyroid hormones control heart rate, cholesterol levels, and body temperature.

When would I need a thyroidectomy?

The team at Southern ENT & Sinus Center may recommend a thyroidectomy to treat problems such as:


Hyperthyroidism refers to an overactive thyroid gland that results in high levels of thyroid hormones. An autoimmune disorder called Grave’s disease or a hormone-producing goiter or nodules is typically the cause.


An enlarged thyroid gland is called a goiter, a problem that typically develops due to hyperthyroidism. However, an underactive thyroid can lead to the same problem when your body tries to make up for low hormones by triggering the gland to produce more.

Thyroid nodules

A nodule is an abnormal growth in the thyroid gland. Enlarged nodules result in a goiter, but a nodule of any size can cause hyperthyroidism if they actively produce hormones. Thyroid nodules are usually benign, but a small percentage become cancerous.

Thyroid cancer

Thyroid cancer affects nearly 53,000 adults in the United States every year, and it’s the fifth most common cancer in women. In men and women, a thyroid cancer diagnosis typically occurs between the ages of 15-29.

What symptoms might develop if I need a thyroidectomy?

The symptoms you experience depend on the underlying thyroid condition. Hyperthyroidism causes symptoms such as unintentional weight loss, a rapid or irregular heartbeat, sensitivity to heat, and thin skin.

You can usually recognize a goiter or enlarged nodules by the swelling at the base of your neck. A goiter, nodules, and cancer may also cause coughing, hoarseness, and difficulty swallowing.

What happens during a thyroidectomy?

Your provider at Southern ENT & Sinus Center may use one of three approaches. They may make an incision in the center of your neck, reach the thyroid through your mouth, or perform a minimally invasive endoscopic thyroidectomy.

Whether they remove part or all of the gland depends on the underlying problem. Your thyroid gland contains two lobes, similar to butterfly wings, that are connected by a strip of tissue called the isthmus.

When cancer is suspected, they remove the entire gland. For other thyroid conditions, your provider may remove one lobe or a lobe together with the isthmus, leaving enough of the gland to produce hormones.

If you need a thyroidectomy or other treatments for a thyroid problem, call Southern ENT & Sinus Center, or book an appointment online.