The thyroid is a small gland that is present at the base of the neck. This gland is known to produce a number of major hormones that are important for various body functions. Thyroid cancer is a rare type of cancer that heavily cause mutations in the thyroid gland and impair its functionality.
Thyroid cancer is most common in people who are in their 30s. But women are at a higher risk of thyroid cancer.
Thyroid cancer is a treatable disease in some conditions. Once it starts to grow its symptoms become more evident. There are many different types of thyroid cancer. Some thyroid cancer may grow slowly and then can turn aggressive.
Here is your ultimate guide to updating your information on the context of thyroid cancer.
What are the Symptoms of Thyroid Cancer?
Although thyroid cancer may not cause any sign or symptom at the start as the mutations expand, the person might experience the following thyroid cancer symptoms:
- Lump formation that one can feel through their neck
- A sore throat that refuses to get better no matter how much you treat it
- Difficulty in Breathing
- Difficulty in swallowing
- Severe pain in the neck
- Change in voice pitch
- Swollen glands on the neck
Thus if you are experiencing these types of symptoms you should visit a general physician. If the thyroid cancer symptoms are persistent then your doctor will recommend you the specialist.
What are the Causes of Thyroid Cancer?
Just like other types of cancer, thyroid cancer also develops when the cells of the thyroid gland start to mutate. The cells become cancerous after a mutation causes a change in the cell’s DNA. These changes or mutations then lead to rapid multiplication and the cells start to grow at an aggressive speed. These mutated cells then interrupt the healthy cells, leading them to die. This mass of mutated cells is known as a tumor.
With the passage of time, the tumor tends to grow in size and starts affecting nearby cells. It can then spread to the lymph nodes of the neck. The thyroid cancers can also metastasize to other body organs as well such as lungs, bones, and other main body organs.
More research is yet in the pipeline to pinpoint the real and exact cause of thyroid cell mutation which then causes thyroid cancer.
What are the Different Types of Thyroid Cancers?
Thyroid cancer is mostly classified on the basis of the cells that are found in the tumor. Your primary healthcare practitioner will examine the tumor cell under a microscope to analyze the types of cells that are found there.
It is highly important for people to understand the different types of thyroid cancer as it helps in designing the proper and relative treatment plan.
Differentiated Thyroid Cancers
It is a broad category of thyroid cancers. All the thyroid cancers that originate in the cells that produce and store thyroid, fall in this broad category. The cells that produce and store thyroid cells are commonly known as follicular cells.
Let us have a close look at the different types of thyroid cancer that fall in this category.
1. Papillary Thyroid Cancer
Papillary thyroid cancer is the most common type of thyroid cancer. This cancer can happen at any age but mostly it affects people who fall between the age gap of 30 to 50.
Papillary thyroid cancers are small in size and they are often well treated. But if left untreated they might start to grow at an aggressive pace and wreak havoc on the nearby healthy cells.
2. Follicular Thyroid Cancer
Follicular thyroid cancer is a rare type of thyroid cancer that affects people who are over 50. It does not metastasize to the lymph nodes of the neck. But if it is aggressive and unattended it can spread to the other organs and body parts as well.
3. Hurthle Cell Thyroid Cancer
Once considered a part of follicular thyroid cancer, it is now considered a different type of thyroid cancer. This is because this type of thyroid cancer behaves in a peculiar manner. These types of cancer growth are aggressive and can also affect the neck and lungs alike.
4. Poorly Differentiated Thyroid Cancer
Poorly differentiated thyroid cancer does not behave to the usual treatments as the other cancer cells would. That is why they are often very difficult to treat,
5. Anaplastic Thyroid Cancer
This type of thyroid cancer tends to grow at a faster pace but it can be quite difficult to treat. People who are above 60 are at a higher risk of anaplastic thyroid cancers. This type of thyroid cancer can cause serious health complications such as swelling of the neck and difficulty in breathing.
Other Rare Types of Cancers
There are also other types of thyroid cancer that originate inside the thyroid such as thyroid lymphoma and thyroid carcinoma. A person suffers from a deprived immune system in the former and a suppressed function of connective tissue in the latter.
What are the Risk Factors of Thyroid Cancer?
There are some risk factors of thyroid cancer that one needs to know in order to avoid this disease.
Being a Female
Well if you are a female then you are at a higher risk of thyroid cancer than all the members of your household. It is because experts believe that the high risk of thyroid cancer is related to the levels of estrogen in the blood.
Too Much Radiation
If you have a word condition that demands you to spend long hours in the presence of radiation then you are exposed to an increased risk of thyroid cancer. In addition to all this, radiation therapy treatments can also put you at risk of contracting this cancerous disease.
If You Have Inherited It!
If your family members have a history of medullary thyroid cancer, multiple endocrine neoplasias, Cowden syndrome, or some other thyroid complication then you are at a greater risk of thyroid cancer.
What Foods You Should Avoid To Reduce the Risk of Thyroid Cancer?
According to several endocrinologists here are some foods that you should avoid if you have thyroid cancer. These all foods have one thing in common they are rich in iodine. This simply means that you should limit your iodine content if you want to limit the risk of thyroid cancer:
- Soy products
- Dairy products
- Egg yolks
- Bakery items
What are the Preventions for Thyroid Cancer?
As we have established some of the basic information above. Thus it is a no-brainer to understand that you can prevent some of the risk factors such as radiation exposure and foods that are high in iodine to cater to reduce the risk of thyroid cancer. But other risk factors such as being a female or having a family history are some things that are not preventable.
What are Some Thyroid Cancer Treatments?
Your doctor might design your treatment plan by taking into consideration the disease spread, risk factors, and lifestyle preferences. From surgery to thyroid hormone therapy, your doctor will look at the condition and then devise a treatment plan.
Some common treatment plans are as follows:
- Radiation therapy
- Targeted drug therapy
A Note From Healthwire
You need to understand the fact that every disease is treatable as long as you are dedicated and have the right set of doctors by your side to aid you. Thus if you are looking for consultation. You can book an appointment with the best endocrinologist via healthwire.pk
In the meantime, we hope you enjoy the best of health and spirits!