A study of 765 cases of clinically solitary cold Thyroid nodules from an Iodine-deficient area
We studied the clinical, radioisotopic and pathologic characteristics and the incidence of cancer in clinically solitary cold nodules of the thyroid in an iodine-deficient area. The study included retrospective analysis of 765 patients who underwent thyroidectomy for a clinically single cold nodule in a ten-year period. We compared the pathological findings with clinical data. In pathological examination, 34% of glands were multinodular. The incidence of nodular colloid goiters were 81.7% and of thyroid cancer 10.2%. Thyroid malignancy increased significantly after age thirty (P<0.005). The incidence of cancer was 8.3% in true solitary nodules versus 13.8% in clinically solitary nodules found to be pathologically multinodular (P<0.05). Papillary carcinoma was the most frequent type (70.5%) and medullary carcinoma the least frequent type (2.6%). Benign nodular lesions were the most common cause of cold nodules. There was no sex difference in the incidence of thyroid cancer. In the patients with thyroid carcinoma the percentage of multinodular glands was higher. Iodine deficiency may be a factor in changing certain characteristics of thyroid nodules.