Treatment for thyroid nodules is dependent upon the type of nodule, according to Mayo Clinic. For benign thyroid nodules, treatment options include watchful waiting, hormone suppression therapy and surgery. Treating thyroid nodules that cause hyperthyroidism involves radioactive iodine supplements, anti-thyroid medications and surgery. Cancerous thyroid nodules require surgery.
Watchful waiting entails having regular physical exams and thyroid tests. If the nodule grows larger, it is likely that another biopsy is necessary. Thyroid nodules that do not change often require no treatment, says Mayo Clinic. Hormone suppression therapy for thyroid nodules involves taking a pill that contains a synthetic hormone that helps stimulate the growth of new tissue in the thyroid.This type of therapy is a matter of medical debate as not enough evidence to prove that it works consistently, as of 2015.
Benign thyroid nodules require surgery when they cause breathing or swallowing difficulties. A doctor may surgically remove indeterminate or suspicious nodules and analyze them for signs of developing cancer, according to Mayo Clinic.
Radioactive iodine, taken in pill or liquid form, helps shrink the nodules and eliminate symptoms when nodules cause hyperthyroidism, explains Mayo Clinic. This treatments lasts for two or three months. Anti-thyroid medication treatments are typically long-term and have many side effects that are harmful to the liver, so individuals need to discuss the pros and cons of this type of treatment with a doctor.