URL of this page: https://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/thyroidcancer.html

Thyroid Cancer


Your thyroid is a butterfly-shaped gland in your neck, just above your collarbone. It makes hormones that help the body work normally. There are several types of cancer of the thyroid gland. You are at greater risk if you

  • Are between ages 25 and 65
  • Are a woman
  • Are Asian
  • Have a family member who has had thyroid disease
  • Have had radiation treatments to your head or neck

You should see a doctor if you have a lump or swelling in your neck. Doctors use a physical exam, blood tests, imaging tests, and a biopsy to diagnose thyroid cancer. Treatment depends on the type of cancer you have and how far the cancer has spread. Many patients receive a combination of treatments. They may include surgery, radioactive iodine, hormone treatment, radiation therapy, chemotherapy, or targeted therapy. Targeted therapy uses substances that attack cancer cells without harming normal cells.

NIH: National Cancer Institute

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