In some cases, thyroid surgery may be necessary to remove certain tumors that are blocking the thyroid gland. This can be done in an outpatient procedure under mild sedation. You will be taken to the procedure area in a hospital or physician’s office.
During the procedure, your surgeon will make an incision in your neck to remove a part of the thyroid gland. The remaining portion of the gland is then reconnected to the throat.
After surgery, you’ll need to take thyroid hormone medication for the rest of your life.
Your healthcare provider will likely recommend that you take thyroid medication for the rest of your life if you need surgery or if radioactive iodine treatment is not effective.
If you have a thyroid nodule, your healthcare provider may recommend radioactive iodine treatment to remove the nodule. Radiation beams kill the thyroid cancer cells.
In general, radioactive iodine treatment is recommended for people who have large thyroid nodules or other thyroid cancer that hasn’t responded to other treatments.
If you do not have thyroid cancer, but have a thyroid nodule, you may need radioactive iodine treatment to remove the nodule.
If you have thyroid cancer, you may need radioactive iodine treatment to remove the thyroid cancer.
Radiation treatments use high energy beams to destroy cancer cells. The type of radiation used depends on the type and size of the cancer. For example, radiation may be used to treat:
- Thyroid cancer
- Cancer in other parts of the body
- Breast cancer
- Prostate cancer
- Skin cancer
Radiation therapy can be used to treat different types of thyroid cancer at different times.
If you have thyroid cancer, your healthcare provider may recommend radiation therapy to kill the cancer cells. You may also wish to consider radiation therapy if you are experiencing pain or swelling in the neck.
Radiation therapy can be used to shrink or destroy cancer in certain other parts of the body. These include:
- Lymph nodes
- Parotid glands
It can be used to treat skin cancer. For example, radiation may be used to treat skin cancer on the face and neck.
Your care team will help you make decisions about your treatment.
Targeted drug therapy
Targeted drug therapy uses a medication that is directed at specific areas of the body to kill cancer cells. It usually is used to treat cancers that have spread to other parts of the body.
Targeted drug therapy may be used as the initial treatment of thyroid cancer or after other types of cancer treatments have been tried.
Targeted drug therapy may include:
- Drugs that work by affecting the thyroid hormone pathway
- Drugs that target and destroy cancer cells
- Drugs that target and destroy cancer stem cells
Clinical trials are research studies that test the safety and effectiveness of new treatments or procedures. They are always done on humans, so they can only be done in the United States.
Clinical trials are done to find out if new treatments work better than the treatments that are available now. They also are done to learn if new treatments are safer. Not all clinical trials are done on humans.
Clinical trials may be done to learn if new targeted drug therapy drugs are effective. If they are, this would help doctors find out if they should be used to treat people with thyroid cancer.
If you would like more information about clinical trials that might be right for you, start by asking your doctor if your clinic or hospital conducts clinical trials.
Clinical trials are not right for everyone. Some may not be right for you. Also, not all clinical trials are done in the United States. Some are done in other countries.
If you would like to learn more about clinical trials that might be right for you, start by asking your doctor if your clinic or hospital conducts clinical studies.
Living with thyroid cancer
It’s important to talk with your healthcare providers about any changes you notice in your body. These changes may be due to thyroid cancer or other reasons. It’s also important to know about any symptoms you are having. These may be due to thyroid cancer or other reasons.
If you are concerned about your thyroid gland, you may want to keep a thyroid-specific journal. This will help you keep track of any changes in your body. If you notice any changes in your thyroid-specific journal, talk to your healthcare provider.
Living with thyroid cancer isn’t always easy. There are many things that can make it harder to manage. Talk with your healthcare provider about things you can do to take care of your thyroid cancer and live with it.
The outlook and survival rate for people with thyroid cancer depends on many factors. These include:
- The stage of the cancer at the time of diagnosis
- The type of thyroid cancer
- The size and location of the cancer
- How well your thyroid cancer responds to treatment
- The age and overall health of the person
- How your thyroid cancer is treated
- Whether you have other health problems, such as heart disease or diabetes
- Your level of physical activity
- Your diet
- Your overall health and overall well-being
If you have thyroid cancer and are experiencing symptoms, talk to your healthcare providers. They can help you understand what you might be going through and what options are available to you.
The American Cancer Society does not recommend that you try any complementary or alternative methods. These may not be right for you, and they may do more harm than good. Some of these methods include:
- Tai chi
There are some things you can do at home to help you manage your thyroid cancer. These include:
- Managing your pain. If you have pain in your neck, you can try using a neck brace or a neck massager.
- Taking medicine to control your pain. If you have pain that is getting worse, you should talk to your healthcare providers about pain medicines.
- Managing swelling. You can use an ice pack to help reduce swelling. You can also try using a heating pad to help reduce swelling.
- Eating a healthy diet. Some people find that eating a well-balanced diet helps their thyroid cancer.
Thyroid cancer is very treatable. If your thyroid cancer is caught at an early stage, the outlook for people with thyroid cancer is very good. In some cases, the cancer may be cured.
Thyroid cancer is very treatable. Talk with your healthcare provider about your treatment options. Be sure to ask questions. You also should ask about any risks you might have while you are getting treatment.
Images by Freepik
Generated by AI