What is Endocrine Surgery?
Endocrine surgery is a sub-specialty of general surgery that focuses predominantly on diseases of the thyroid, parathyroid, and adrenal glands.
The adrenal glands are found above each kidney. They are triangle-shaped, and measure about half an inch in height and 3 inches in length. If the adrenal glands are not working well, they can make too many or too few hormones. Adrenal gland hormones help control fluid and salt levels in the body for healthy blood volume and blood pressure. They also help the body react to stress and change. Adrenal masses can cause hormone levels to grow too high and result in high blood pressure.
Parathyroid glands are located in the neck, on the thyroid gland. Their function is to regulate how the body uses calcium. Sometimes, benign (noncancerous) growths called adenomas appear on one or more of a person’s parathyroid glands. Parathyroid adenomas are usually discovered when a higher-than-normal calcium level shows up in a routine blood test. The most common treatment is to remove the enlarged gland (or glands).
If you have a nodule, you may need a procedure called fine needle aspiration (FNA) biospy. It is done to remove a sample of cells from the nodule. This helps check whether the nodule is benign or cancerous. If the nodule is benign, you may not need treatment right away. If the nodule is cancerous or suspected to be cancerous, surgery may be needed to remove part or all of the thyroid gland.