Thyroid nodules: When to biopsy

Fauzia Q. Vandermeer, MD and Jade Wong-You-Cheong, MD

Abstract: Thyroid nodules are increasingly found incidentally on cross-sectional imaging studies performed for nonthyroid indications. The challenge is to diagnose the minority of malignant nodules while limiting the impact on the large majority of patients with benign nodules. This article reviews the epidemiology of thyroid cancer, the role of ultrasonography in the triage of thyroid nodules for biopsy, and areas of continuing controversy that require further research.