Every year in the United States, over 20,000 cases of thyroid cancer are diagnosed. There are several types of thyroid cancer:
- Papillary Cancer (most common)
- Follicular Cancer and Follicular Variant of Papillary Cancer
- Hurthle Cell Cancer
- Medullary Cancer
- Poorly Differentiated and Anaplastic Cancer
Some of these cancers can be diagnosed with a needle biopsy and some require surgery for diagnosis. With the exception of Lymphoma and perhaps Anaplastic Cancer, most Thyroid Cancer is treated with Surgery as the primary modality of treatment. Conventional Radiation Therapy and Chemotherapy are rarely indicated, however, many patients do require Radioactive Iodine taken as a pill following surgery. Although Thyroid Cancer may be life threatening, most patients with Thyroid Cancer will be detected early and will be cured, or will live many years before the disease recurs if appropriately treated.