Thyroid Cancer Treatment helps in getting rid of cancer cells present in the thyroid gland that helps in balancing the metabolism in the body. There are no set causes that can develop thyroid cancer in a human, but the risk factors include combination of genes and environmental conditions (like radiation exposure, intoxication etc.). Interestingly it is more common in women than men, but the reason for that hasn’t been determined yet (1).

Most thyroid cancers cases are curable, especially if the cells have not spread in other parts of the body. In case it can’t be cured through therapy, the focus of the treatments gets on extracting or destroying cancer to prevent it from growing, getting spread or returning in the body, via surgery. The most common symptom of thyroid cancer includes lump formation, difficulty in swallowing and breathing. 

How to diagnose Thyroid Cancer?

The only possible way to detect it is through biopsy. The tissue from the thyroid lump is surgically extracted and examined for cancer.  Other examinations that help to become certain about cancer include CEA blood test, X-Rays, PET Scans, physical exams, MRIs, and ultrasound etc.

Types of Thyroid Cancer

Thyroid Cancer is malignant that develops in the tissues of thyroid gland, which has been divided into the following categories based on their acuteness.

  • Papillary- it is amongst the most common type of cancer, accounting 80% of the thyroid cancer cares. Papillary carcinomas grow at a slower pace and develop from follicular cells that can grow in both glands. Although, it can be easily treated.
  • Follicular- Follicular carcinoma accounts patients living in countries with low intake of iodine in their diet. It is more transferable compared to papillary carcinoma and can spread in bones and lungs.
  • Hürthle Cell Carcinoma- (Oxyphil Cell Carcinoma) is a similar subtype of follicular that accounts 3% thyroid cancer cases in the world.
  • Medullary- it is an aggressive form of thyroid cancer that develops in thyroid glands C cells. These cancer cells spread in other organs while infecting the lymph nodes. They worsen the patient’s condition by releasing high levels, of CEA (Carcinoembryonic Antigen) and Calcitonin in the body which thankfully can be diagnosed in blood tests.
  • Anaplastic- is the rare form of thyroid cancer, but is also most chronic. It spreads in other regions of the body at a much higher pace. Fortunately, only about 2% cases have been reported under this category.

Thyroid Cancer Treatment

The selection of the treatment depends on various factors like the speed at which the infection is spreading, the size, and stage of cancer. Here is a list of few treatment options that can help treat cancer.

Surgery

Unlike other forms of cancer, surgery is really an effective way to get rid of the cancer lump in the thyroid. Majority of thyroid cancer can treated by mere surgery. However, chemotherapy is recommended after it to ensure destruction of all cancerous cells.  

Chemotherapy

Chemotherapy uses two or more forms of anti-cancer medication to cure cancer, which is taken by the patient’s in a standard regimen oral or through IV. Chemotherapy can be used to reduce or fully get rid of cancer depending on the criticality of the case.

Radioactive Iodine Treatment

In this treatment, an isotope of radiation packed iodine is used to treat the patient’s cancer. It is served to the patient in a form of a capsule. Isotope is given in small fractions of I-131 that is orally swallowed. Once inside the gastrointestinal tract, it gets absorbed into the bloodstream which then goes to the thyroid gland in the form of concentrated blood that starts destroying the cancer cells.  

Radiation Therapy

It is the process in which X-Ray energy used to target the affected area in the body and killing all the cancer cells in that area. Unlike chemotherapy, it fights off the cancer cells without affecting the healthy cells present in the body. 

Explore medmonks.com to learn more about different types of cancer and their treatment procedures.