While standard protocols have been established for the treatment of virtually all cancers, doctors will often modify them for their individual patients. These modifications are based on many factors including the patient’s age, general health, desired results, and the specific characteristics of his cancer.
Treatment of thyroid cancer aims to:
Completely cure the cancerRemove or destroy as much of the cancer as possible in order to provide the longest possible disease-free, symptom-free survivalEven if the cancer cannot be cured, treat symptoms (such as pain or difficulty swallowing)In medullary cancer, screen family membersTreat cancer which has spread elsewhere
Treatment options include:
ChemotherapyRadiation therapySurgical proceduresMedicationsLifestyle changes
Existing treatment protocols have been established and continue to be modified through clinical trials. These research studies are essential to determine whether or not new treatments are both safe and effective. Since highly effective treatments for many cancers remain unknown, numerous clinical trials are always underway around the world. You may wish to ask your doctor if you should consider participating in a clinical trial. You can find out about clinical trials at the government website
Baudin E, Schlumberger M. New therapeutic approaches for metastatic thyroid carcinoma.
Conn’s Current Therapy.
54th ed. Philadelphia,PA: WB Saunders; 2002: 652-657.
Cooper DS, Doherty GM, et al. The American Thyroid Association Guidelines Taskforce: management guidelines for patients with thyroid nodules and differentiated thyroid cancer.
Cornett WR, Sharma AK, et al. Anaplastic thyroid carcinoma: an overview.
Curr Oncol Rep.
Rachmiel M, Charron M, et al. Evidence-based review of treatment and follow up of pediatric patients with differentiated thyroid carcinoma.
J Pediatr Endocrinol Metab.
Thyroid carcinoma. In:
Cecil Textbook of Medicine.
21st ed. Philadelphia,PA: WB Saunders; 2000: 1247-1250.
What is thyroid cancer? American Cancer Society website. Available at
http://www.cancer.org/docroot/CRI/CRI_2_3x.asp?dt=43. Accessed December 10, 2002.
What you need to know about cancer of the thyroid. National Cancer Institute website. Available at
http://cancer.gov. Accessed December 10, 2002.
Last reviewed September 2014 by Mohei Abouzied, MD, FACP
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
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