I'm not expecting that anyone will magically know what's going on with my thyroid (but if someone does that'd be pretty cool too!) and I totally get that this is not a forum for professional medical advice (caveat emptor and all that). But there are some very smart people on PaleoHacks and more than a few have mentioned thyroid issues, so perhaps this will ring a bell with someone.
(btw in case there are any "Paleo Cops" around, I suspect the original problem is related to a long history of the worst kind of SAD eating and just might be fixable in a Paleo context)
The short version is that I have a benign but large thyroid cyst that doesn't go away, and the doctor is talking about removing that half of the organ if another biopsy (which includes draining) doesn't fix it.
Here's the longer version:
At my last check-up my doctor noticed that my thyroid seemed swollen. I got a sonogram that showed I had a "complex cyst" - which is basically multiple cysts - with one particularly large one on my right side. Apparently thyroid cysts are very common - most people have some and mine probably have been there since my 20's (in my 50's now).
I got an appointment with an excellent endocrinologist, who did a biopsy on the largest cyst. The biopsy needle can be used to suck the contents out, and he pulled out an astounding quantity of liquid - I think it was almost a CUP of reddish stuff. It was rather liquid (it could have been solid or spongey but wasn't, fortunately) and came out easily.
(I took pictures of the filled syringes he used btw - but I'll do everyone a favor and not post the photos...)
We got the results back yesterday (a week later), and the Dr. described it as a "non result". No evidence of malignancy which is great, but nothing definitive about what it IS. Plus in the week since the biopsy the cyst seems to be as big as ever - I'm pretty sure it's filled with liquid again.
I'll get another sonogram in a while, and we'll discuss whether to do another biopsy/draining again, or whether to 'cut to the chase' and remove that side of the thyroid (or do both).
So far as I know I've never had a disturbing result on my blood tests (and didn't this time either) except for too much 'bad' cholesterol (lately much improved with paleo eating) and perhaps iron on the low side for a guy. I never chased down the 'subclinical' thyroid thing I've read about so don't know if that's an issue - always had warm hands though...
The Endo said that cyst liquid usually is a precursor fluid, used by the thyroid to synthesize the hormones. For some reason the thyroid can overproduce this precursor but still produce the hormones appropriately, so the fluid backs up. It's not clear though if that's what it is in my case. I'm thinking of it like an internal zit that can be drained multiple times before it's 'empty'...
So - any thoughts?