Shaped like a two-inch bow tie, the thyroid gland is positioned in the front of the neck and below the larynx. The largest gland in the neck, its main function is to secrete key hormones that regulate metabolism, body heat, bone growth and other vital functions.
It is estimated that 13 million Americans have some form of thyroid disorder. Women are eight times more likely than men to develop such conditions. Tumors in the thyroid gland are usually benign, but can still cause serious health problems. Accordingly, surgery is often the best course of action when a tumor is diagnosed, regardless of whether it is malignant or benign.