Thyroid Cancer

Thyroid cancer is cancer of a butterfly-shaped gland at the front base of the neck. Some patients with thyroid cancer may notice no symptoms, and others may notice a lump or pain in the neck.

Women are more likely to have thyroid cancer at three times the rate compared to men. There are a few types of thyroid cancer:

  • Papillary and/or mixed papillary/follicular thyroid cancer
  • Follicular and/or Hurthle cell thyroid cancer
  • Medullary thyroid cancer
  • Anaplastic thyroid cancer

Treatments include surgery, radioactive iodine therapy, thyroid hormone therapy, external beam radiation therapy, chemotherapy, and targeted drug therapy. Thyroid cancer is generally a very treatable cancer.

This site provides general information. Please talk to your own doctor to make healthcare decisions that are right for you. Videos will be published here as they are edited. 

Network Manager

What type of cancer and stage?
A: Thyroid; Variant: Papillary, classical type; Stage: I with metastases to lymph nodes
What was your treatment path?
A: Two partial lobectomies and one round of radioactive iodine therapy; Ongoing treatment: Levothyroxine
As a PEN Network Manager, what are your interests and how are you helping other patients?
A: Patient education, patient-provider communication, policy, health literacy, adolescent and young adult outcomes/quality of life (all in the context of cancer)
Most frequently asked question: How has cancer affected your life?
A: Cancer has affected my life in a number of ways, both negative and positive. Looking at the negative, most people don’t understand what going through cancer is like, so it’s hard for me to explain the way I feel and know that my feelings are understood. I also experience depression, anxiety, hair loss, fatigue, and fluctuations in body temperature and mood. One thing I wish more people would understand is symptoms don’t stop once you enter survivorship. It’s an ongoing battle. On the other hand, there have many silver linings of having cancer. I found my passion in helping other cancer patients through different avenues, I’ve made friends and joined communities of people who “get it,” and I found new strength in who I am as a person.
Where can you find Carly?

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