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Lingual Thyroid: Clinical Characteristics of 15 Cases

FREDERICK W. NEINAS, M.D.; COLUM A. GORMAN, M.B., B.Ch.; KENNETH D. DEVINE, M.D.; and LEWIS B. WOOLNER, M.D.
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▸Address requests for reprints to Section of Publications, Mayo Clinic, 200 First Street SW, Rochester, MN 55901.


Rochester, Minnesota


Ann Intern Med. 1973;79(2):205-210. doi:10.7326/0003-4819-79-2-205
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Fifteen cases of lingual thyroid are described. Patients were of all age groups, but 87% were females. Throat discomfort, dysphonia, hemoptysis, and hypothyroid symptoms were the commonest presenting complaints. In all but one case, the lingual tissue was the only thyroid tissue. None showed malignant changes. Several other thyroid abnormalities occurred in relatives of some patients. No associated congenital defects were seen. Excisional biopsy should be performed on all midline lesions at the base of the tongue that grow aggressively or give rise to hemorrhage or pain. A radioiodine scan may lead to the diagnosis of others. For most cases needing treatment, administration of thyroid hormone is best. In one of two cases, autotransplantation of the lingual thyroid was successful.

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