This video is all thyroid cancer treatments including what treatments are available if you have thyroid cancer, the consequences of these therapies on your life, and we’ll also discuss some important factors which help determine your prognosis.
It’s important to realize, though, that the majority of thyroid cancer cases are caused by the least aggressive form of thyroid cancer. This, combined with the fact that the most common therapy to treat thyroid cancer is the removal of the thyroid gland has helped increase the 5-year survival rate of thyroid cancer to around 97 to 98%.
When it comes to thyroid cancer you may not have a choice as to which therapy is ideal for you, but it still helps to understand each treatment and how it impacts your body.
Treatment options available for thyroid cancer include:
– By surgery, I am referring to a procedure known as a complete thyroidectomy. This surgery results in the entire removal of your thyroid gland (well close to the entire amount) and it is the most common treatment for thyroid cancer. Removing your thyroid, though, can sometimes cause side effects afterward such as weight gain or fatigue if you are not dosed appropriately.
#2. Radioactive iodine ablation:
– Radioactive iodine is sometimes combined with a thyroidectomy to help kill off any tissue which is left over after your surgery. Radioactive iodine is a procedure which specifically targets and destroys thyroid gland tissue. It’s helpful to use in conjunction with surgery because sometimes thyroid gland tissue can exist outside of the normal anatomy. Using RAI can help kill off extra tissue especially if cancer has spread.
#3. Chemotherapy and radiation:
– Chemotherapy isn’t used very often for thyroid cancer because most cancers can be treated with surgery and with RAI. But, some cases of aggressive thyroid cancer may require the use of chemotherapy and radiation therapy.
#4. TSH Suppression:
– Lastly, another technique used to treat thyroid cancer is the use of TSH suppressive therapy. The goal here is to take high enough doses of thyroid hormone to suppress the natural production of TSH or thyroid stimulating hormone. This hormone is stimulating to thyroid gland tissue and can theoretically stimulate thyroid cancer cells as well. You can suppress the normal production of TSH by taking high doses of thyroid medication and this is sometimes used for patients after surgery.
Each person is different so the exact treatments that you need for your cancer will depend on the type of cancer you have, how aggressive it is, the stage at which it was diagnosed, your age and other important factors.
I’m Dr. Westin Childs and I focus on thyroid health, hormone balance, and weight loss. I write about thyroid disorders, weight loss, insulin resistance, estrogen/progesterone balance on my blog. I truly believe that hormone balance is the key to managing your weight, your mood and your quality of life which is why I’m so passionate about it.
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This video is not intended to be used as medical advice. If you have questions about your health please consult your physician or primary care provider. Dr. Westin Childs goes to great lengths to produce high-quality content but this is NOT a substitute for medical care.
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