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Thyroid Cancer: Causes, Symptoms And Treatments For Thyroid Cancer

If diagnosed in time, thyroid cancer is one of the most treatable forms of cancer. But there's a catch! While thyroid cancer is highly treatable if diagnosed early, the disease does not show any symptoms in the initial few stages.

Thyroid Cancer: Causes, Symptoms And Treatments For Thyroid Cancer

Thyroid cancer is one of the most treatable forms of cancer

HIGHLIGHTS

  1. The thyroid gland is responsible for regulating your metabolism
  2. Thyroid cancer is one of the most treatable forms of cancer
  3. Radiation exposure can increase the risk of some forms of thyroid cancer

The thyroid is a small, butterfly-shaped organ in the body, located in the front of your neck. The thyroid gland is responsible for regulating your metabolism. Besides this, it releases hormones which regulate other important functions of your body like using blood pressure, heart rate, and body weight temperature. When the cells genetically change themselves, it results in an abnormal growth of cells, which over time develops into a tumor and is known as thyroid cancer. If diagnosed in time, thyroid cancer is one of the most treatable forms of cancer. But there's a catch! While thyroid cancer is highly treatable if diagnosed early, the disease does not show any symptoms in the initial few stages.

Also read: What Is The Difference Between Hypothyroidism And Hyperthyroidism?

What are the symptoms of thyroid cancer?

If your thyroid gland is healthy, you will not experience any symptoms. However, if the cancer has progressed to a particular stage, you are likely to experience the following symptoms:


1. Lump in the throat

2. Constant cough without cold or flu

3. Difficulty in swallowing

4. Swollen lymph nodes in the neck

5. Hoarseness

6. Pain radiating from the neck till the ears

7. Difficulty in breathing

8. Vocal changes

Also read: 7 Tips For A Healthy Thyroid

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, consult your doctor right away. These symptoms may not conclusively point towards thyroid cancer. They could be indicative of cancer in other parts of the body. If you are noticing lumps in your throat, it usually is nothing you need to be worried about. Nevertheless, it is important to get these checked by a doctor.

What are the causes of thyroid cancer?

Causes of thyroid cancer have not been recognized yet. However, there are some factors which can raise a person's odds of contracting this disease. They include:

1. Genetic syndromes

Some diseases can be inherited and sadly, cancer is one of them. Sometimes, a person inherits an abnormal, thyroid cancer gene from parents. Eight out of ten cases of medullary thyroid cancer are inherited.

Also read: 5 Causes Of Hypothyroidism You Should Know

2. Iodine deficiency

Iodine is important for your overall health. In some cases, if you do not get enough of this nutrient in your diet, your risk of thyroid cancer increases.

3. Radiation exposure

Radiation exposure can increase the risk of some forms of thyroid cancer. If your neck was exposed to some form of radiation as a child or if you went through too many X-rays during childhood, your risk of thyroid cancer increases.

Also read: The Best And Worst Foods For Your Thyroid

Other important risk factors of thyroid cancer are:

1. Gender, women are more prone to thyroid cancer

2. History or breast cancer

3. Age, older people are more prone to thyroid cancer

What are the treatment options for thyroid cancer?

The good news about thyroid cancer is that this disease is highly treatable. Even if you are at the advanced stage of the disease, there are a number of effective treatment options with good odds of recovery. And when therapy doesn't work, thyroid surgery can come to your rescue.

Also read: 9 Signs Of An Underactive Thyroid

Thyroid cancer treatment will depend on the type of cancer and to what extent it has spread. Most people opt for surgical removal of the tumor. This way the body loses its ability to produce normal thyroid hormones. This can be replaced with oral hormones. Other treatment options for thyroid cancer include the following.

1. Chemotherapy

2. External beam radiation therapy

3. Radioactive iodine therapy

Disclaimer: This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information. NDTV does not claim responsibility for this information. 

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