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Questions, experiences and reviews (110)

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thyroid cancer?
Im 15 and i was wondering if i could have thyroid cancer? my lymphnoids under my chin and near throat have been swollen for almost a year (in february). But i have a small lump by my thyroid. Also, when i push on the lyrenx and thyriod it moves to the left. Could this be cancer?
  Honey, quit freaking yourself out (even though I do it all the time).

Go to a doctor and find out for sure.
You could drive yourself insane if you let your imagination run wild. I should know, I do it all the time! (like now with a lump IN my back!!) AHHHHHH

Seriously, go to a doctor and just find out what it is.
Where are the top sites in the US for thyroid cancer evaluation and treatment?
Female, 62 years, on Synthroid for 20+ years after thyroid stopped functioning. Recent ultrasound shows two solid nodules (under 2 cm, one in each lobe) and a 3rd nodule "in the upper pole." Thyroglobulin blood test abnormal. Hoarse voice. Had thyroid scan today. Internist felt growth 3 wks ago which prompted ultrasound. Internist suggests biopsies next at area diagnostic center. Earliest date available Oct. 10. Is this good advice or should I seek endocrinologist exam now? Am a 6 year uterine cancer survivor at an excellent, regional cancer center, which does very little with thyroid cancer. What are the top centers for thyroid cancer? What would you recommend doing in my situation?
Jan H
  I had tumors on my thyroid and had it removed when I was seven years old. I would definitely talk to an endocrinologist, if I were you. No matter whether the advice you were given was good or not, the endocrinologist will know what is best for you. Baylor in Dallas is an excellent hospital. They've done all of my thyroid related surgeries.
What is the percentage of a person under 21 having cancer in their thyroid?
I am curious as to the chances of someone under the age of 21 found with thyroid Nodules having cancer. I was told that there is I higher risk for those in their teens to have thyroid cancer found with nodules than those over 21 found with thyroid nodules. I was wondering if that is true and just how much of a greater risk the teens are at.
  The cut off for childhood cancer is under 20 years old 1.8% of thyroid cancers occur in the age group, that is about 665 cases – do the math.
Does calcification in thyroid nodules mean you have cancer?
Ok so I had a thyroid biopsy done because there were multiple nodules found in my thyroid. I was told they are about 2 cm, (the 2 largest ones) The tech and the doctor that was performing the biopsy they said that I had calcification in the nodules, from what I saw the calcification was a little less than half the size of the actual nodule. Now does this indicate thyroid cancer?
  Actually, calcified nodules of the thyroid account for only about 5% or so of thyroid cancers in general.

What needs to be done at this point is have the pathologist take a look at them to be sure.

A thyroid uptake scan is usually done BEFORE any biopsy would be done -- typically looking for what are termed "cold nodules." These are suspicious for cancer.

Best of luck to you!
Thyroid cancer.................?
What is the first symptom you would experience if you have Thyroid cancer???????? And if a cancer/disease gave you a list of symptoms and you only had one of the symptom and that symptom is a common symptom for other things... but u didnt have any of the others... should you get worried that u have that disease/cancer?
Gabby S
  What are symptoms of thyroid cancer?

Early thyroid cancer often does not cause symptoms. But as the cancer grows, symptoms may include:

A lump, or nodule, in the front of the neck near the Adam's apple;

Hoarseness or difficulty speaking in a normal voice;

Swollen lymph nodes, especially in the neck;

Difficulty swallowing or breathing; or

Pain in the throat or neck.

These symptoms are not sure signs of thyroid cancer. An infection, a benign goiter, or another problem also could cause these symptoms. Anyone with these symptoms should see a doctor as soon as possible. Only a doctor can diagnose and treat the problem.
If you have thyroid cancer will your TSH level in your blood test be off?
My throat has been hurting for a month and my voice is hoarse. Sometimes my throat hurts when I breath or feels dry. I don't have a cold or a runny nose or allergies or acid reflux. Is it possible to have thyroid cancer if your TSH levels are normal?
  Yes, you can have thyroid cancer and a normal TSH...I did. To tell you the truth, it really doesn't sound like you have thyroid cancer. Dry throat isn't really a symptom of thyroid cancer, pain is rarely. You could have a virus with your voice issue. I would suggest going to your doctor to make sure everything is okay.
How long can someone live who is diagnosed with thyroid cancer?
I have a dear friend diagnosed with papillary cancer of the thyroid. She had a surgery already and will undergo other treatments in the future. My friend is still in her early 30's and has children. She is a very optimistic gal and lives life to the fullest. But somehow, I am concerned for her. I don't know how long she will have to live (as in the case of other cancer patients) and would want to spend more qualtiy time with her and make up for the times that were lost.
Also, I learned from my friend recently that the cancer cells had spread to her lymph nodes.
  It is very difficult to say without more specific information. Often surgery can remove all the cancer and future treatment often relates to level of the thyroid hormones which are reduced due to the thyroid having been removed.
Your friends post operative appointment would discuss all of this with her. She will also have had tests to see if the cancer had spread.
By the sound of things her optimistic outlook may have came from her follow up appointment.
Maybe you should discuss your concerns with her. This may reassure you. Best wishes to you both.
How can a thyroid cancer metastasize into only one part of the body?
My brother had been diagnosed with thyroid cancer and his cancer managed to metastasize into his liver. My question is, how is it that cancer in one part of the body can metastasize into one part of the body but not the surrounding areas? Or is it just a matter of time?
Jojo Rivers
  It happens that way cancer.I have found that the liver is much more susceptible to mestatization than other organs because of its functional ties to soo many organs as well as its role in the the body.if he has been treated with chemotherapy or radiation its likely to get the brunt of the effects because of its clean up function.....hopefully in trying to manage it the doctors won't set off a series of mestizaton on the other organs due to exposure of more chemotherapy agents due to the livers reduced function.
I hope you and your family the best.
Thyroid Cancer?
I have been told there is a chance that I have thyroid cancer. I will be meeting with a specialist at the end of the month to determine what will be happening next.

I guess my questions are many:

1) What are good resources on the net to find out more? I figure Web MD would have good info - anything any better and more specific?

2) What are the options? I know every case is different, but is there anyway I can know what I am facing - so that I know what kind of questions to ask once I meet with the doctor?

3) What chances are that it could spread? Where could it spread to, and what other symptoms would I be looking for?

(I've been told that the tests for my thyroid are normal, but I know I have had a large thyroid for almost 20 some years now. But this is the first it has hurt like this in a long time - I have the raspy voice from time to time, and can feel extremely fatigued with a temp)

Any info anyone can give either here or by email would be aprpeciated.
Mike S
  I was diagnosed with Thyroid Cancer 5 years ago. First I'll answer your questions.

1-Best resource for thyroid cancer is

2-There aren't too many options. Once diagnosed with thyroid cancer, you must have surgery to completely remove your thyroid gland. This is called a total thyroidectomy. Afterwards, you will have to take a pill everyday for the rest of your life. After surgery, most people will have RAI. That stands for radioactive iodine. Thyroid glands suck up iodiine. So the radioactive iodine goes in and "kills" any remaining thyroid tissue or cancer tissue. It's taken in the form of a pill. The radioactive isotope is called I-131. Some doctors will say that surgery is enough. But the RAI really is what goes in as the "cleanup crew" to kill any remaining cancer.

3-Thyroid cancer is a very slow spreading cancer (usually). If it spreads, it's usually to the lymph nodes nearby. Some very rare thyroid cancers can spread to the lungs or brain but usually it's slow.

Most thyroid cancers are very treatable and some would even say it's curable. First step for you will be an ultrasound of your thyroid. Next would be a biopsy which is called a Fine Needle Aspiration (FNA). A needle is inserted through your neck, into your thyroid, and cells are removed. Sounds painful but it's not. Takes less than a minute and feels like a pinch. If the results come back as cancer, you'll have the surgery and about 2 months after surgery you'll have the RAI.

Best of luck to you. The thyca website is really wonderful.

mari m
What are some questions to ask your doctor after being diagnosed with thyroid cancer?
I'm getting the right part of my thyroid removed tomorrow, because the left part showed evidence of hurthle cell cancer.
Can you give me some questions to ask my surgeon?
  I found these question to be very useful before surgery (I knew I had cancer going into surgery) The site itself is wonderful, you can always email any sort of question and someone will respond quickly! Good luck!
What is the treatment for thyroid cancer?
I have enlarged nodules and am wondering about treatment for thyroid cancer, if in fact I do have cancer. I have enlarged nodules on my left and right side.
  You have a 95% chance of NOT having thyroid cancer. The treatment for thyroid cancer varies depending on the type and stage. The most common types of thyroid cancer (Papillary and Follicular) always have a surgical removal of the thyroid and (sometimes) follow up treatment of Radioactive Iodine (I-131) to destroy any remaining thyroid tissue. Levothyroxine is needed for life since a total thyroidectomy results in one not being able to produce thyroid stimulating hormone. Try not to worry, good luck with everything!
Are thyroid nodules less or more likely to be cancerous when one has been taking Synthroid for 20 years?
Female. Age 62. Thyroid stopped functioning 20+ years ago. Now I have 3 nodules (2 solid, per ultrasound) and elevated Thyroglobulin. Hoarse voice. Cannot find any reference to incidence of thyroid cancer in people who have been on synthetic hormones for years.
Jan H
  Taking thyroid supplementation for hypothyroidism, whether synthetic or not, does not raise your chances of developing thyroid cancer. The nodules were a coincidence and not caused by the thyroid hormone supplementation. If you had not had the supplementation you would not have lived this past 20 years or if you did you would have been very miserable with symptoms. I've been on thyroid supplementation for much longer than twenty years.

Here is an ACS web page discussing the few real risk factors for thyroid cancer.
Is there something I can take over the counter to replace levoxyl?
I had thyroid cancer about 5 years ago and they took my whole thyroid and put me on Levoxyl and I have been on it for five years. I can not afford going to the doctor to get a new persciption so i need something like a herb or anything else I can get over the counter. Plus I am gaining weight and need help. Please help me with an answer! I really hate not having a thyroid!
  I have been on levoxyl for about 5 years and I have lost weight. I am pretty healthy tho and only take 25mgs daily. I don't think you should get off the lavoxyl with out talking it over with your Dr.
The thyroid gland is very important and they tell me to never stop taking it.
Can depakote interfere with your thyroid blood tests?
I have the understanding that Depakote is not only to treat depression but is said to help those with thyroid symptoms and
people who get migraines. If a person has all the symptoms of hyperthyroid and a nodule is found on their thyroid but they have been on depakote because it was thought they were manic depressive. Then when they go in for their thyroid tests their
thyroid tests come back normal. Could the depakote be interfering with their thyroid test results?
  I can't find anything that states that Depakote is said to help those with thyroid symptoms. I can't see how it could possibly help either.

It is extremely common for hyperthyroidism to be misdiagnosed as a mental illness such as bipolar though, due to laziness on the part of the doctor, and unwillingness to run the right tests.

This is from the product insert:

There have been reports of altered thyroid function tests associated with valproate. The clinical significance of these is unknown.

CNS Effects
Irregular menses, secondary amenorrhea, breast enlargement, galactorrhea, and parotid gland swelling. Abnormal thyroid function tests (see PRECAUTIONS).
Lisa A
What is a Thyrogen Injection?
I am having my second series of scans following my thyroid cancer treatment. I was told I could have a Thyrogen Injection which would spike my hormone levels and they could perform my tests without me having to go off my thyroid medicine. Are there any side effects to it and what exactly does it do?
  Thyrogen is a recument TSH and you won't have to go hypo for a scan. It lessens the time you are hypo, when you are hypo this causes the cancer to be unsupressed so the shorter time the cancer has to grow the better. I have a support site for thyroid cancer, maybe you might want to join and talk to others with cancer. There is also a free LID cookbook for you
I have thyroid cancer, my thyroglobulin continues to be high, should I see a cancer specialist?
I have had 2 ablations, my thyroglobulin is 239, I am concerned and would like to have opinions about seeing a specialist
dona w
  was it your family doctor who asked for the tests and gave diagnosis?.what is his plan for you?have you not seen a specialist? i don't know what has been done for you thus far,or your last test results or what meds you are on etc. but i would call the doctor today and ask him what's going on.suggest to him you would like to go see a specialist.the doctor you want is called an endocrinologist. ask for the best in town.sometimes we have to take action if the doctor seem to be moving at a snail pace,when we have illness.
I had a thyroid ultrasound at the endocrinologist and he saw 3 nodules?
My endocrinologist told me that he could see 3 thyroid nodules on ultrasound and that my thyroid is inflamed. But when I got a second ultrasound approximately 2 weeks later they said that everything is fine. I haven't gone back to the doctor yet, but I'm majorly frustrated because I'm still having some symptoms that made them think I had a thyroid problem in the first place (tachycardia). Does anyone else know what this could be?? thanks!
  Nodules alone don't always cause symptoms, so they may not even be related to your condition.
mom 2 4
Is it possible to have thyroid nodules shrunk without having to take them out surgically?
I have a few nodules that are caused from my thyroid. Had a biopsy that came back okay. My doctor wants to take half of my thyroid out if I so desire. I do not want the operation. Can I have them "go away" without the surgery? Please help.
  Yes, but you need to talk to your doctor. ((
Thyroid Cancer Pain? What is the Cause and treatment?
Is there an experienced Oncologist that can answer this? I have Multiple Endocrine Neoplasia type 1 (M.E.N. 1). It first manifested with parathyroid tumors (benign) as well as Thyroid Tumors (papillary malignancy). The indicating symptom which led to the diagnosis was severe joint pain in all major joints. The pain was first attributed to high serum calcium levels (13+) and an assumed psudogout condition from the high ca levels based on the joint pain. Total thyroidectomy/parathyroidectomy completed. Then Metastasis to both lungs with approximately 20 3mm papillary tumors which after a V.A.T.S procedure found the tumors were mixed with sarcoid tissue. this is where I am at now.
My question for you is this: I am still experiencing massive joint pains in my major joints. All blood chemistry is normal now and RA tests are negative. I take massive Morphine doses in order to just get up out of my chair. The joint pain is crippling, and none of my doctors have been able to find ANY REASON for the pain. CT's and MRI's are negative for psudogout or cartilage degeneration.
Can the mere existence of the Thyroid Cancer tumors in my lungs be the cause of joint pain? Can my body just "hurt" because I have cancer? Is this type of complaint common? My doctors are less than understanding and are always hesitant to prescribe the pain meds for lack of a positive diagnosis and no physical evidence as to the cause of the pain. Could it be the sarcoid tissue causing the pain? Please help. I am so frustrated with my doctors, they never prescribe enough pain meds to allow me to get on my feet for any length of time, and I have 5 young kids to try to keep up with!
  You might want to contact ThyCa they would probably be able to help with some of your questions (Papillary Q's)... but they don't deal with M.E.N. Sarcoid tissue can cause aches and pains. I really think you should look for another doctor, one that will listen to all your concerns.
Enlarged Thyroid?
Im sixteen, I was told I have hypothyroidism at age fifteen. When I went for a check up my Doctor told me I have a enlarged thyroid, and is sending me for a ultrasound. I take Levothyroxine Sodium and told that it is working. Is a enlarged thyroid something I should be worried about?
  Enlarged thyriod is called goiter. Doctors are real good at keeping it from enlaging very much. So it no longer poses the problem it once did. Just take your pills and pay attention to what the doctor tells you.
On Victoza how long before I get full effect of the drug?
Does it take time to get into system. Like a week? Victoza how long before it could cause thyroid cancer too?
  Liraglutide (Victoza) is a glucagon-like peptide 1 receptor agonist. It functions as an incretin mimetic. Incretin mimetics have a rather high incidence of gastrointestinal side effects. The word incretin was first coined in the late 1890s. The first article on incretin mimetics was published in 1906. Incretin mimetics are available as inject-able only. Dipeptidyl peptidase 4 inhibitors have a nearly identical effect as incretin mimetics but are available in oral form. They have fewer side effects than exenatide (Byetta) and liraglutide (Victoza). Sitagliptin phosphate (Januvia) and saxagliptin (Onglyza) are the 2 DPP4 inhibitors available at this time. The pharmacologic principles of drugs is as follows. There is a single dose effect which is not very interesting as physicians do not typically prescribe a single dose of a medication. Pharmacokinetics means what the body does to the drug in terms of absorption, distribution, re-distribution, and metabolism. This is easy to measure and typically takes no longer than a week to achieve steady state. Pharmacodynamics means what the drug does to the body. This is typically unknown or only partially understood. Pharmacodynamic steady state typically requires 2 to 6 weeks for the full effect of the drug is known. If I may be of further assistance please let me know. I wish you the very best of health and in all things may God bless.
john e russo md facm faafp
Tell me about your experience with Thyrogen treatment.?
I am about to undergo Thyogen treatment as a follow up to thyroid cancer. I have so many questions -- did the 2 shots hurt? Did you throw up from the shots? How bad was it going low iodine? Anything else i should know?
Xhasted Mom of 2
  I have been through it several times for the same reason. The shots were not too bad. Everytime that I have had the shots, I have gotten headaches along the line of migranes. I never threw up. I stay on a low iodine diet. Be prepared that they may tell you after your scan to come back the following day. When they told me that, it terrified me. I saw my nurse in the hallway and I asked her about it and she said that it is sometimes happens. Good luck as you go through the treatment.
Anyone know anything about side effects for Thyrogen?
I had thyroid cancer 8 years ago and am getting a body scan. Instead of getting off my medication for 6 weeks the doctor wants to give me 2 thyrogen shots before he does the scan.
Thank you so much!
Barbara T
  These are the side effects that I found for you. It also states that if your 16 or younger you should not take it. It's used to determine thyroid problems and to treat thyroid CA. I hope this helps.

Common side effects:

Head Pain Less Severe
Feel Like Throwing Up

Infrequent side effects:

Flu-Like Symptoms
Throwing Up
Numbness and Tingling
Feeling Weak

Rare side effects:

Feeling of Throat Tightness
Feeling Faint
Life Threatening Allergic Reaction
Reaction due to an Allergy
Signs and Symptoms at Injection Site
Overactive Thyroid Gland
be happier own a pitbull
Thyrogen injections for Thyroid cancer?
has anyone had these treatments for a radioiodine injection and scan? I am having my first injection on monday and i have to do something quite important later that day. i'm wondering about any side effects....did you feel jittery or nauseous or anything else i should know about that might prevent me from going about my day???
any information would be greatly appreciated!!
  I had thyrogen a couple months ago. I didn't have any side effects. The whole appointment took about 2 minutes and I went straight to work afterwards. Nausea is listed as a possible side effect, but it's a small % of people.
Pathophysiology Help?
I can't seem to find these answers in my textbook, I'm assuming that the first answer is to further produce thyroid hormone but I'm not sure and as far as the second my best assumption is negative feedback since most hormones are regulated by such a system.

Increased thyroid hormone levels in the blood result in:
A) further stimulus to produce thyroid hormone.
B) decreased release of thyroid-stimulating hormone from the anterior pituitary.
C) increased secretion of thyrotropin-releasing hormone from the hypothalamus.
D) inhibition of parathyroid hormone release from the parathyroid glands.


To adapt to high hormone concentrations, many target cells have the capacity for:
A) negative feedback.
B) positive feedback.
C) up-regulation.
D) down-regulation.
  Increased thyroid hormone levels would cause decreased thyroid stimulating hormone from ant pituitary (Answer B)... an example of negative feedback (Answer A- you're right)
Enlarged spleen, thyroid nodules, swollen lymph nodes in neck?
I just found out that my spleen is swollen, and that is what is causing the pain in my upper left abdomen. I've had thyroid nodules for years, but recently they are much larger, and the nodes near them are swollen now. I am waiting for results of CBC, Hepatic Panel, and mono spot, and have a thyroid ultra-sound scheduled for tonight. Does anyone else have similar symptoms? What could be causing all this?
  First off, you have ALL the classic signs and symptoms of Mono, so I'm glad they are doing a mono spot!

Enlarge spleen is a condition that normally happens when you have mono due to the fact its a 'filtering' organ and trying to remove the infection. Same with the enlarged lymph nodes in your neck. I'm curious to know if you have a sore throat or have been weak for the last couple of days!

As for thyroid nodules, experts know that thyroid nodules run in families. This means you are more likely to have a thyroid nodule if one of your parents has had a thyroid nodule. Or they can form when a person has been exposed to to much radiation.

Hope this helps!
What make pancreatic cancer so different from other cancers?
From everything that I have read about pancreatic cancer it is uncurable. Breast cancer, leukemia, and other kinds of cancer can be cured/brought into remission and I was wondering what is so different about pancreatic cancer that does not allow this type of cancer to be cured/go into remission?
  Pancreatic cancer can be treated for cure under very specific conditions. It spreads by local invasion and via lymphatic channels. If it is caught early prior to invasion in the local vasculature, it can be treated for cure via several procedures - Whipple (pancreaticoduodenectomy), Total Pancreatectomy, or Distal Pancreatectomy. A major issue is catching it early. The symptoms of this disease early on are usually no symptoms, vague abdominal pain, mild discomfort. It is hard to detect. There is also no good screening that is cost effective. The reason for this is the cancer is not that common, and the tests available are not that cheap. This makes for a very inefficient screening method. The ones out there currently that can detect pancreatic cancer include CT scan of the abdomen and Endoscopic Ultrasound. Both of these tests have their own drawbacks. CT scan of the abdomen involves radiation that may set you up for a cancer. Endoscopic ultrasound requires sedation, a specialist (gastroenterologist), and has risks of perforation. Also the tests need to have a high degree of sensitivity (meaning that there is a high number of people who have the disease also test positive). Endoscopic ultrasound is being used more for symptomatic pancreatic cancer, but I do not know of studies used for screening the general population.

Another issue is it's proximity to other organs. It is near the duodenum, stomach, inferior vena cava, aorta. It is also a part of the biliary system and liver. It can spread to many important organs easily.

There is some increased hope on the horizon as new chemotherapy drugs are being developed. Dr. Vickers at the University of Minnesota is doing clinical trials on a new medication that will hopefully help with treating the disease.
My tsh level is 0.04, after taking tapazole for my overactive thyroid. What do you think is wrong?
Most people's thyroid levels improve with tapazole and mine seem to be getting worse, even though I feel physically better.
star 70
  It takes time for the medication to work my specialist told me at first that it would take 6months to a year for it to fully work. For me its been two years and my specialist is looking in to decreasing my tapazole and maybe going off it for good.
Just talk to your doctor, it just may be a wait and see sort of thing.
Breast Cancer?
First, how young have you heard of women getting breast cancer? I think it might be not as common for a 18-29 year old to get breast cancer, than it is for a woman over 30 right?

And also, Is it possible to catch somehow breast cancer before the tumor is big enough to tell apart from the normal breast? If you only have a little aching in one spot, a family history of many cancers including breast it likely?

Just getting opinions, thank you.
  Breast cancer is more common the older you get. But women in their teens do get it. It's just very rare.

Yes, it can be possible to find cancers before they are big enough to tell apart from the normal breast with tools such as mammogram and MRI.

If you have aching in one spot and it persists through more than one menstrul cycle, yes, you should get it checked out, probably with an ultrasound.

Has anyone in your family been tested for the breast cancer genes? Maybe they could get tested and give you a better idea of your risk. Info below.

Good luck.

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