The thyroid gland is small compared to many other organs, but it has a big role when it comes to keeping you active and healthy. A member of the endocrine system, the thyroid produces hormones that regulate the functioning of the body, and a malfunctioning of the organ can cause a number of ailments. An endocrinologist in Tampa is an expert at recognizing and treating thyroid disorders.
Understanding the Thyroid Gland
Shaped like a butterfly, the thyroid is located in your neck below the voice box. The gland produces hormones that, among other things, control breathing and heart rates, regulate cholesterol levels and exert control overweight and muscle development. The thyroid is itself activated by hormones produced elsewhere in your body, allowing it to produce its own hormones.
Thyroid Gland Disorders
Nearly 30 million Americans are believed to experience thyroid disorders every year, although only about half of those affected are properly diagnosed. Hypothyroidism involves insufficient hormone production, which can lead to such health problems as excessive fatigue, depression, and obesity. Excessive hormone production, known as hyperthyroidism, can result in such conditions as anxiety, mood disorders, and even hair loss. A goiter is an enlargement of the gland itself, which can hamper breathing and swallowing. The thyroid can also be affected by nodules, which are often benign but can occasionally be cancerous.
Diagnosing and Treating Thyroid Disorders
A variety of methods are available in detecting thyroid abnormalities, but it will usually take a combination of two different tests to make an accurate diagnosis. Such diagnoses may involve laboratory tests, biopsies or the use of ultrasound equipment. Thyroid disorders are often treated with hormones, although diet and lifestyle changes may in some cases be sufficient.
Seeking Help from a Tampa Endocrinologist
Using the latest technology, Tampa endocrinologists have the ability to diagnose thyroid conditions and recommend the best course of action for each case. The doctors will accomplish this while providing their patients with care that is both professional and personalized. If you suspect a thyroid problem, learn more about the services available from Tampa endocrinologists by visiting www.thyroiddoctortampa.com.