Goiter is the enlargement of the thyroid gland and is not cancerous. A person with goiter can have normal levels of thyroid hormone (euthyroidism), excessive levels (hyperthyroidism) or levels that are too low (hypothyroidism). The thyroid is a gland, shaped like a butterfly, located at the base of the neck, just below the Adam's apple. If the thyroid gland grows larger than normal the patient has a condition known as goiter. Goiters are generally painless; however, if the gland gets very large the patient may have problems swallowing properly, and may also develop a cough.
They can be classified in several ways by morphology, appearance, cause and other characteristics. Non-Toxic Simple (struma diffuse) Multinodular (struma nodosa) Uninodular (struma uninodosa) Toxic Diffuse (Graves) Toxic multinodular Toxic nodule Special Cancer Thyroiditides Inflammatory Various causes Chronic infection Actinomycosis Amyloidosis
Class I - palpation struma - in normal posture of the head, it cannot be seen; it is only found by palpation. Class II - the struma is palpative and can be easily seen. Class III - the struma is very large and is retrosternal; pressure results in compression marks.