A Study to Evaluate the Size of Thyroid Nodules as an Indicator for Malignancy

Size of Thyroid Nodules as an Indicator for Malignancy

Keywords: Biopsy, Diagnostic accuracy, Fine-needle, Large nodules, Thyroid neoplasms, Thyroid nodule


Background: Several authors have questioned the accuracy of fine- needle aspiration cytology (FNAC) in large thyroid nodules. It’s the current practice to provide thyroidectomy to patient with thyroid nodules 4 cm or larger regardless of the FNAC results. The aim of the study is to answer two questions: is the size of nodule associated with higher risk of malignancy and is the size indication for surgery. Subjects and Methods: This study included 20 patients who underwent thyroidectomy. We compared all thyroid nodules with benign FNAC and their final histopathology reports. Patients were divided into two groups based on the size of the nodule (< 4cm or >4cm) and indication of surgery. Results: 20 patients with thyroid nodule underwent thyroid surgery. 13 patients had nodule <4cm and 7 patients were 4 cm. For patients with nodules <4 cm, 3 patients had a malignancy, and for those with nodules 4 cm, 1 patients had a malignancy. For benign cases FNAC and histopathology reports are showing same results, (p<0.05). Conclusion: Thyroid nodules 4 cm are not risk factor of malignancy. Thyroid nodules 4 cm with benign FNAC should not undergo thyroidectomy as false negative rate is low. Therefore, the decision for surgery ought not to be taken based on the size of the nodule.


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