Korean J Radiol.  2019 Jun;20(6):947-955. 10.3348/kjr.2018.0599.

Degenerating Thyroid Nodules: Ultrasound Diagnosis, Clinical Significance, and Management

Affiliations
  • 1Department of Medical Ultrasonics, The Third Affiliated Hospital of Sun Yat-Sen University, Guangzhou, China.
  • 2Department of Radiology and Research Institute of Radiology, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Asan Medical Center, Seoul, Korea. radbaek@naver.com
  • 3Department of Hospital Pathology, College of Medicine, The Catholic University of Korea, Seoul, Korea.

Abstract

Degenerating nodules (DNs), which primarily manifest as benign thyroid nodules, are one of the main causes of discordance in ultrasonography (US) and cytological assessments. Intranodular hemorrhage is one of the mechanisms contributing to discordant nodules, and an impaired blood supply may explain further DN shrinkage and infarction. The surgical specimens can be divided into acute and chronic stages based on the histological changes, which usually mimic the US features of malignant tumors. Serial US follow-up should be recommended instead of other unnecessary procedures. However, repeated fine-needle aspiration, diagnostic surgery, or core-needle biopsy may still be necessary for indeterminable or highly suspicious DNs.

Keyword

Thyroid nodules; Ultrasonography; Degenerating nodules; Fine-needle aspiration

MeSH Terms

Biopsy
Biopsy, Fine-Needle
Diagnosis*
Follow-Up Studies
Hemorrhage
Infarction
Thyroid Gland*
Thyroid Nodule*
Ultrasonography*
Unnecessary Procedures
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