What is Thyroid Cancer?
Thyroid cancer is a cancer of the thyroid gland, which is a part of your endocrine system. This gland is located in the front part of the neck just below the Adams Apple. Hormones produced by your thyroid gland govern body temperature, heart rate, and metabolism.
The majority of thyroid malignancies are treatable. Surgery, chemotherapy, radiation, hormone therapy, and radioiodine therapy are all options for treatment.
Types of Thyroid Cancer
According to doctors, thyroid cancer is classified by the type of cells from which it grows.
Thyroid cancer comes in several forms, including:
Papillary thyroid cancer: Papillary thyroid carcinoma accounts for up to 80% of all thyroid cancers. This cancer spreads slowly. Although papillary thyroid cancer frequently spreads to lymph nodes in the neck, it responds favorably to therapy. Thyroid cancer in papillary form is largely treatable and seldom deadly.
Follicular thyroid cancer: Follicular thyroid carcinoma is responsible for up to 15% of thyroid cancer diagnoses. This cancer has a higher chance of spreading to your bones and organs, such as your lungs. Treatment of metastatic cancer (cancer that spreads) may be more difficult.
Medullary thyroid cancer: Medullary thyroid cancer accounts for around 2% of all thyroid cancers. 25% of medullary thyroid carcinoma patients had a family history of the disease. A defective gene (genetic mutation) might be to blame.
Anaplastic thyroid carcinoma is the most difficult form to cure. It spreads fast and often into surrounding tissue and other sections of your body. This uncommon cancer form accounts for around 2% of thyroid cancer diagnoses.
Symptoms of Thyroid Cancer
A thyroid nodule, which is a bump or growth in your neck, may be felt by you or your healthcare professional. If you have a thyroid nodule, don’t be alarmed. The majority of nodules are not cancerous. Only approximately 3 out of every 20 thyroid nodules are cancerous (15%).
Other symptoms of thyroid cancer include:
- Breathing or swallowing difficulties.
- Voice loss (hoarseness).
- Lymph nodes on your neck are swollen.
If you have thyroid cancer that has spread to other parts of your body, you may have symptoms such as
- Appetite loss.
- Vomiting and nausea.
- Unexpected weight loss.
- Bone pain.
Causes of Thyroid Cancer
Experts remain perplexed as to why certain cells turn cancerous (malignant) and harm your thyroid. Certain variables, including radiation exposure, a low-iodine diet, and defective genes, can raise the risk. Other risk factors are as follows:
- Thyroid enlargement (goiter).
- Family history of thyroid illness or cancer.
- Thyroiditis: An infection of the thyroid gland.
- Endocrine illnesses are caused by gene mutations (changes), such as multiple endocrine neoplasia type 2A (MEN2A) or type 2B (MEN2B) syndrome.
- Iodine deficiency.
- Obesity (having a high BMI).
- Radiation therapy for head and neck cancer, particularly in children.
- Radiation exposure from nuclear weapons or a power plant disaster.
Diagnosis of Thyroid Cancer:
If you have an enlarged thyroid nodule or other symptoms of thyroid cancer, your doctor may prescribe one or more of the following tests:
Blood tests: Thyroid blood tests assess hormone levels and determine if your thyroid is operating appropriately.
Biopsy: A fine-needle aspiration biopsy is a procedure in which your healthcare practitioner extracts cells from your thyroid to screen for cancer cells. A sentinel node biopsy can tell you if your cancer has spread to your lymph nodes. Ultrasound technology may be used to guide these biopsy procedures by your clinician.
Radioiodine scan: A radioiodine scan can identify thyroid cancer and assess if it has spread. You take a tablet that contains a little quantity of radioactive iodine (radioiodine). Iodine is absorbed by your thyroid gland over a few hours. A specific gadget is used by your healthcare professional to measure the quantity of radiation in the gland. Less radioactive areas require additional testing to determine the presence of cancer.
Imaging scans: Thyroid cancer and cancer spread can be detected using radioactive iodine scans, computed tomography (CT), and positron emission tomography (PET) scans.
Thyroid Cancer Treatment
Treatment for thyroid cancer is determined by the size of the tumor and if the disease has spread. Treatment options include:
Surgery: It is the most often used therapy for thyroid cancer. A surgeon may remove part of your thyroid gland (lobectomy) or the entire gland (thyroidectomy) depending on the size and location of the tumor. In addition, the surgeon removes any surrounding lymph nodes where cancer cells have disseminated.
Radioiodine therapy: This treatment involves swallowing a tablet or drink carrying a larger dosage of radioactive iodine than is used in a diagnostic radioiodine scan. Radioiodine shrinks and kills cancer cells as well as the damaged thyroid gland. This procedure is quite safe. The thyroid gland absorbs nearly all the radioiodine, and the rest of your body receives very little radiation exposure.
Radiation therapy: This treatment destroys cancer cells and prevents them from developing. External radiation therapy employs the use of a machine to send powerful beams of energy directly to the tumor’s location. Internal radiation therapy (brachytherapy) entails implanting radioactive seeds into or near the tumor.
Chemotherapy: Chemotherapy medications, administered intravenously or orally, destroy cancer cells and halt tumor development. Few patients with thyroid cancer will ever require chemotherapy.
Hormone therapy: It prevents the release of hormones that might cause cancer to spread or return.
Thyroid Cancer Clinic:
We provide the best healthcare facilities for Thyroid Cancer patients. Our multispecialty clinics are situated in the following locations:
Our Centres for Thyroid Cancer Treatment in Mumbai
One can visit any of our branches that are nearby to your location for the best overall healthcare treatment of thyroid. Our experts not only provide superior quality care but also provide complete treatment along with rehabilitation facilities and post-operative care.