Treatments for Thyroid Cancer
Treatments for thyroid cancer may include surgery (most recommended) to remove the tumor and/or the entire thyroid gland may be removed to prevent the cancer from returning. For thyroid cancer that has spread to lymph nodes located in the neck, patients may undergo a surgical treatment to have both a thyroidectomy (remove thyroid gland) and a lymphectomy (remove the affected lymph nodes).
Other treatment options for thyroid cancer may also be recommended, though this depends on stage of and the type of cancer and the general condition of the patient. For example, radiation therapy is undertaken when surgery is not recommended. This treatment can be both external (using x-ray radiation beams) and/or internal (taking a radioactive iodine treatment by mouth). Radiation therapy and/or chemotherapy may be used in conjunction with or without a thyroidectomy.
After a thyroidectomy (remove thyroid gland), thyroid hormone therapy is usually required for the remainder of the patient’s life to replace the hormone that would be otherwise secreted by the thyroid gland.
For tumors that do not respond to surgery or radiation therapy, other therapies, such as chemotherapy, may be used to treat thyroid cancer and prolong the patient’s life.
Florida Hospital Cancer Institute continues to research new, innovative treatments for thyroid cancer. We also research the safety and effectiveness of current treatments to develop safer, better therapies. Current research has allowed for the development of minimally invasive procedures that may reduce pain, stress and side effects.