Thyroid problems

What Are The Symptoms Of Goiter

Max. D Gray
By Max. D Gray. Updated: July 3, 2017
What Are The Symptoms Of Goiter

A goiter is the enlargement of the thyroid gland. This neuroendocrine gland is located at the front of the neck, on the windpipe just below the Adam's apple. The thyroid hormones, thyroxine and triiodothyronine hormones are responsible for regulating all our body's metabolism and are thus essential for maintaining hormonal balance. These hormones are produced, stored and released into the thyroid gland. If you want to know what the symptoms of a goitre are, keep reading this OneHowTo article.

You may also be interested in: Hypothyroidism: What Are The Symptoms

Steps to follow:


There are different types of goiters, varying in severity and form. In terms of severity, they can range from a simple goitre to a toxic nodular goitre.

  • Simple goiter: It occurs when the thyroid gland increases, without any accompanying conditions such as hyperthyroidism, hypothyroidism or other more serious conditions. This is a non-toxic inflammation
  • Toxic nodular goiter: It occurs when the thyroid enlargement is caused by the presence of nodules. Normally, these develop from a simple goiter.

In terms of its shape, it may diffuse, nodular or multi-nodular.


There are many things that can cause goiters to form, however, there is no specific pattern. It is sometimes as a result of iodine deficiency, inflammation of the thyroid gland, other congenital abnormalities, etc. The common denominator in all these cases is that all suffer a mild or severe thyroid hormone imbalance. However, in all cases, you should seek medical attention as soon as you notice any symptoms.


Especially with simple goitres, patients do not usually display symptoms, and is normally picked up in routine check-ups or when seeing the doctor for another reason. Regular check-ups are therefore important.

What Are The Symptoms Of Goiter - Step 3

Sometimes, a bulge may be noticeable at the front of the neck. This lump is not painful at the touch and, in fact, rarely bothers patients at all.


When a goiter is larger and can be seen quite clearly, it is normally accompanied by other symptoms. The most common is difficulty breathing due to compression of the trachea and adjacent structures, due to the increase in size of the thyroid gland. When it reaches this point, treatment normally involve surgery (removal of a part or all of the thyroid).

What Are The Symptoms Of Goiter - Step 5

Cough and a sore throat are common symptoms of a goiter. Hoarseness or other voice changes may occur, as well as problems in swallowing and discomfort.

What Are The Symptoms Of Goiter - Step 6

When the goiter is very large, to the point of entering the retrosternal area, you may feel dizzy and even suffer some syncope. If the thyroid is not large enough that it compresses the surrounding area, treatment for the goiter usually involves seeing a physician, depending on the symptoms and causes. The doctor will monitor the patient and the development of goiter and perform relevant examinations to check that everything is working properly.

This article is merely informative, oneHOWTO does not have the authority to prescribe any medical treatments or create a diagnosis. We invite you to visit your doctor if you have any type of condition or pain.

If you want to read similar articles to What Are The Symptoms Of Goiter, we recommend you visit our Family health category.

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What Are The Symptoms Of Goiter