The thyroid gland is a part of the endocrine system. Thyroid cancer is the fifth most common type of cancer in women, and it is one of the fast-growing cancer diagnoses. In India, the number of new thyroid cancer cases is 14 per one lakh men and women, and the death rate is 0.5 every year.
The thyroid gland is a butterfly-shaped endocrine gland located at the base of your throat, just below Adam’s apple. Its role is to produce hormones that regulate the normal functions of the body such as heart rate, blood pressure, body temperature, and weight.
You will not show any signs and symptoms in the early stages of thyroid cancer. The following thyroid cancer symptoms are seen as the cancer progresses.
The exact cause is not clear. Cancer occurs when the cells of the organ undergo genetic changes or mutation allowing the cell to multiply and grow rapidly. Thus the cells lose the ability to die and become abnormal, forming a tumor. These abnormal cells can also invade the nearby tissue and spread to the body.
Hashimoto's thyroiditis is a thyroid condition associated with an increased risk of thyroid cancer. This disease also causes hypothyroidism. The other risk factors include:
Early diagnosis, especially when you are diagnosed with the presence of an inherited gene that increases the risk of cancer, you can go for thyroid surgery to prevent cancer.
If you are working in a nuclear power plant, make a habit of taking potassium iodine tablets to reduce the risk of thyroid cancer.
The presence of thyroid nodules is common, but less than 1 in 10 contain thyroid cancer. Your doctor will check for physical changes in your thyroid region and asks about the risk factors, medical history, and family history.Your doctor would ask you to go for the following tests:Blood tests - to determine if thyroid gland is functioning normally.
The thyroid cancer treatment depends on the type and stage of cancer. Surgery is preferred in most of the conditions.Thyroidectomy- the doctor removes the entire thyroid, or leaves small rims of thyroid tissue around parathyroid glands to reduce the risk of parathyroid damage. In some cases, only one side or lobe of the thyroid is removed, called as thyroid lobectomy.
After the surgery, you may experience complications like bleeding and infection. In some cases, the thyroid can even come back usually in the first five years of surgery. This can be treated with medications.
Other treatment options include:
The bitter truth is that you should find your way to cope with cancer and be happy. Try to find what works best for you. Consider these tips: