It is sometimes said that if you are going to be diagnosed with a cancer, thyroid cancer is the “good cancer to have”. What a statement! Thyroid cancer is a “real cancer”. This is a cancer that can strike at any age and is found more commonly in women than men.
The reason that this cancer may be thought as “the good cancer” is that it is usually a very slow growing cancer. If diagnosed in the younger years, patients of both papillary and follicular cancers have a more than 97% cure rate if treated appropriately.
Thyroid cancer affects the thyroid gland. Thyroid cancer may also spread to surrounding tissues, lymph nodes and occasionally to the lungs. The thyroid is a butterfly shaped gland located in the base of the neck behind the Adam’s apple. This “master gland” is responsible for many functions in the body such as the metabolic rate, regulation of weight, blood cholesterol levels, energy levels and sleeping patterns.
There are four types of thyroid cancer, papillary, follicular, medullary, and anaplastic. There is no definite causes of thyroid cancer. Having been exposed to radiation, such as in Chernobyl or the fallout from the atomic weapon testing, and family history of thyroid cancer or disease are a couple risks that may lead to the development of cancer in the thyroid gland.
The common symptoms for thyroid cancer are a lump or swollen nodule in the neck, pain in the neck area that may even reach up to the ear area, change or hoarseness of the voice, and difficulty swallowing or breathing.
Thyroid cancers are typically treated with complete removal of the malignant lobe or a total thyroidectomy. There may be the need to remove some of the lymph nodes if the cancer has spread. If the cancer has broken out of the capsule of the gland radioactive iodine treatment may be required to oblate the remaining thyroid cells in the body.
As a thyroid survivor I know it is a very manageable cancer. It is very important to have early detection making performing regular neck checks very important. At http://papillarythyroidcancerguide.com a guide can be found explaining the step by step procedure to check your neck for lumps or nodules.