Not only can thyroid tissue appear in ectopic sites, but ectopic elements can be found in the thyroid gland. It is important to recognize these in order to avoid misdiagnosis.


Tissues that can be found within the thyroid gland:

(1) mature cartilage

(2) thymus tissue

(3) parathyroid gland

(4) salivary gland tissue

(5) adipose metaplasia of thyroid stroma

(6) mature skeletal muscle

(7) solid cell nests (remnants of the ultimobrachial bodies)

(8) lymph nodes


Tissues that can be found adjacent to the thyroid gland:

(1) pancreatic tissue (in perithyroidal cervical cyst)


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