HealthBoards (
-   Thyroid Disorders (
-   -   Thyroid nodules, can they shrink on their own? (

stephanie867 05-22-2006 11:51 AM

Thyroid nodules, can they shrink on their own?
My doctor found a complex nodule (28mm) in my thyroid. I had the ultrasound done, radioactive uptake and also the FNA biopsy. Came back as benign. My doctor told me to do nothing, and see what happens in 6 months. I wasn't comfortable with that and went to an endo. Really nice lady, and she's been an endo for a long time (20+ years).

I'm not hypo nor hyper thyroid. My levels came back normal. My only health issue is that I have trouble with anxiety and panic attacks, and have for about 18 years now.

The endo wants to put me on synthroid to see if it will shrink the nodule. She said it will most likely make me hyperthyroid until my body gets used to it. I've had my anxiety under control for the last 3 months and don't want to go there again.

So, I've read a ton of articles, visited a bunch of boards and couldn't find any instances where thyroid nodules have shrunk by someone using synthroid.

However, I DID find a few articles that said if a nodule is going to shrink it will do so on it's own and also found a couple of people who've been to spiritual healers and actually had their thyroid nodules disappear (I don't know if I'm ready to go that route yet...).

So, I guess I'm asking...has anyone had a thyroid nodule shrink on it's own? Or if you took synthroid, did it help?

Thanks for any info!


hyperkim 05-22-2006 03:40 PM

Re: Thyroid nodules, can they shrink on their own?
Stephanie, I have a nodule also. I had a long discussion in January with my dr about nodules. I copied this from a post I made right after that drs appt.

She says from her 25 years of clinical and personal experience with thyroid goiters, nodules, cancers, autoimmune thyroid conditions, etc. the following is a consistancy. Thyroid nodules are generally of no threat unless they are growing. (Unless of course they affect swollowing, breathing, appearance, etc.) Her usual routine with nodules is to establish a track record in the begining with an original sono to check thyroid health and presence of goiter and/or nodules and their type. Then if nothing extraordinary appears you follow up every three months. If no growth is noted you can then back off to sono once every 6 mos to 1 year. Unless a symptom arises to need a current look at the thyroid. If there is a nodule that is growing she will offer to do an uptake scan or a biopsy to establish the nature of the nodule. Then procede with appropriate treatment from there. She said her personal experience has been that 10 years ago she had 8 or 9 nodules (can't remember exactly) with one of those being dominant in size. She had someone (can't remember who she said, sorry) that wanted her to biopsy all of them or just have her entire gland removed. She didn't want surgery yet, but the thought of all those needles going in her neck was too much of a thought (she admitted she is a wimp). She put it off. And off. And off. Finally she did another sono to check on the nodules. Some of them had shrunk. So she kept puttin them off. Anyway, fast forward to yesterday(in Jan)....She said currently she is down to one nodule and it is approx 3.5cm x 2.5cm. This was the largest and it is smaller than ten years ago. She says all cancerous nodules grow. Only some noncancerous nodules grow. All the cases of thyroid cancers she has seen have progressed very slowly. She has not seen any drastic progression of thryoid cancer. That is why she just watches the nodules on sono then goes on to the other tests when nodule growth starts.

That's it for the previous post. As for the Synthroid question, my dr is hypothyroid herself. And she does take a thyroid hormone replacement. I don't know which one or if that is a factor with her nodule situation.

After alot of debating at the time, I finally decided to go along with my dr and do a "wait and see" approach. My sister and mother were told basically the same thing about spots on the liver and cysts on the kidney. "Wait and see". Retest in 3-6months to check for changes.

I think the general thought is that cysts/nodules/tumors can and do grow everywhere in the body. They only become a problem when they start interfering with the basic functions of the body. Most shrink/disappear without us ever knowing they were there.

My dr redid my sono one month after the first one. There had been no changes. I go back on June first for my next sono. I'll probably post the results here when I get them back.

Ok. I think that's all I know about possible shrinking nodules. If you have normal labs and have no symptoms at this time, then I would do the "wait and see" thing. You can keep an eye on the nodule with sonograms. And you can request thyroid levels be checked regularly to keep an eye out for thyroid problems before it flares. (If that were to happen.)

If you do get the labs to "watch" you thyroid levels....Get the Free T4 and Free T3 levels tested. And get the actual paper copy of the labs report. Then you can track your levels to see for yourself if your levels are "sliding" one way or the other.

Ok I'll stop typing! sorry for the info overload!

Best wishes and keep us posted1

stephanie867 05-22-2006 05:17 PM

Re: Thyroid nodules, can they shrink on their own?
Thank you for the info overload! Very helpful!!

I go back in July for another ultrasound. She was talking like if there'd been no changes by July, then she was going to recommend surgery. But I think I'm going to wait and stay off the meds.

My naturopath recommended I try rubbing castor oil on it...she says she uses that as a remedy for patients with ovarian cysts. She's never tried it on a thyroid nodule, but said it certainly couldn't hurt - and I'll have a nice, soft neck, if nothing else :-)

hyperkim 05-23-2006 10:13 AM

Re: Thyroid nodules, can they shrink on their own?
OH you made me laugh with that soft neck thing! You do know some guys find necks sexy. So having a nice soft one couldn't hurt! LOL!

As far as thyroid goes, it sounds like you have a good plan. (To me anyway!)

Keep us posted...

Lisa09 06-27-2007 10:53 PM

Re: Thyroid nodules, can they shrink on their own?
To Hyperkim, Kim is your dr. still monitoring your nodule every 3 months with ultrasound? Has your nodule or nodules shrunk or changed in size at all during the time they have been monitored? Lisa09

Oleander53 06-28-2007 07:12 AM

Re: Thyroid nodules, can they shrink on their own?

I am monitoring my nodules every 8 to 12 weeks with ultrasound. I am on Armour to shrink or suppress them.......I feel it is going well.... I still have my 4 dominant nodules but there is no increase in their size. I did have a goiter and 10 nodules now my thyroid is normal size and I only have my largest 4. Does it work or is it coincidence? I will continue to take the Armour....

It is a hard decision on what to do..........I know I am right there..... Many people have their thyriod out to find there was nothing wrong with it but some benign nodules............then someone has theirs out and it is cancer....
So you hear both sides...Since the Doctors are rarely clear about the thyroid and leave it up to you to make the decision it becomes a struggle. Have you ever heard a Doctor say "It's your appendix now go home and think about your options". No they say it has to come out and schedule surgery....So the decision is made for you. Not so with the thyroid.......

Most books will tell you medication really does not work for supressing or shrinking but I am sticking with it.....

My favorite Doctor so far said.......I would really hate to take your thyroid out unnecessarily, it is an important gland.....He also goes along with what hyperkim says......... if they grow they are a problem.......

Also as far as being healed? I feel anything is possible....any type of good thoughts, visualization, prayer is worth a try. I am a believer that stress and unhappiness will make you sick so I have to believe in the opposite.

I have been monitoring for a full year now........... I hope I have done the right thing........I am scheduled for a CT and a biopsy at the end of July......we will see what happens...... I have avoided a biopsy so far.

My thyroid labs are low normal ( without medication) and antibodies are negative........ Good luck..

If I end up having mine out and find I have cancer or feel better after it is gone......I will be the first to admit I should not have waited......... So time will tell......


hyperkim 06-28-2007 12:24 PM

Re: Thyroid nodules, can they shrink on their own?

Ahhhh, an update. Yes, and no, are the answers.

We tracked my nodule every few months for nearly a year. Hmmmm. I'll try to make this short. I'll try....Here's the highlights...

I was dx hyperT in Nov 05. Started thyroid sonos and began tracking it. In about Feb 06 my hyperT levels dropped suddenly to the bottom of the "normal" range. In June 06 the sono showed a slight increase in size. I mean slight. The dr said lets follow in one month, if no changes we'll continue watching. Meanwhile I do research and find that sudden thyroid level changes can effect nodules. And hypOthyroid levels can also effect nodules. I figured this was the reason since my levels had done a nose dive and stayed there for the last three months. But, hey, it doesn't hurt to watch it, right? July 06 sono showed no changes since June 06 sono. I'm thinking great I'll be back in three months. The tech and the dr start conversing(not listening to me at all), the next think I know they want me to set up surgery for removal of the nodule and possibly that half or all of my thyroid gland. Plus go ahead and do a biopsy in one week. My red flags started waving all over everywhere. They didn't seem to notice. I now felt like a guinea pig. NOT!

Needless to say, but, yes, I canceled the biopsy appt. I did go back in Sept 06 for another sono. Suprise! No changes. Sigh. I no longer see that dr. (For that reason and other reasons.) I am currently still looking for another one familiar with thyroid issues. Very hard to find.

So other than that episode (which I still believe was caused by my sudden change/drop in thyroid levels) I seem to have stayed pretty stable in the nodule department. Nothing obvious anyway. I still say taking the wait and see approach is the way to go.

Probably not the best update info, but it is what it is. Hope it helped you some.

Take care,

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 07:05 PM.