What Are Goiters?
Goiters can be any one of several types of growths in the thyroid gland, located at the base of the front side of the neck just below the Adam's apple.
In short, a goiter is any enlargement of the thyroid gland. A goiter may be a temporary problem that will remedy itself over time without medical intervention, or a symptom of another, possibly severe, thyroid condition that requires medical attention.
What Causes a Goiter?
Goiters do not represent one disease. They can form quickly or very slowly over years. Before iodized salt was introduced in 1920, iodine deficiency was the main cause of goiter in the U.S., and it still is worldwide. In the U.S., the main causes of a goiter are autoimmune disorders (including Graves disease or Hashimoto's) and mutlinodular goiter.