The thyroid is a gland located at the base of the neck and regulates the heart rate and blood pressure among other bodily functions. Thyroid cancer affects this gland and can impair its function. While it is not a common form of cancer in the US, its incidence appears to be increasing. It is a highly curable form of cancer, and the doctors at the Beverly Hills Cancer Center have developed an excellent program to deliver among the finest thyroid cancer treatment Los Angeles has available.
Symptoms of thyroid cancer
While thyroid cancer doesn’t display symptoms in its earlier stages, it will have noticeable effects as it advances. Such symptoms include:
- A tangible lump on the neck
- Changes in the voice, such as increased hoarseness
- Difficulty in swallowing
- Pain in the throat and neck
- Enlarged lymph nodes in the neck
Should any of these symptoms arise, it may be necessary to make an appointment with a thyroid cancer doctor. Thyroid cancer is not common, so there may be testing for other causes before tests for thyroid cancer are done.
Testing for thyroid cancer
There are several tests that can detect the incidence of thyroid cancer, including:
- A simple physical exam can find lumps in the thyroid as well as swelling in the lymph nodes
- A blood test may be done to measure the amount of thyroid-stimulating hormone in the body
- Imaging tests to allow the doctor to view the lymph nodes and see if they are enlarged
- A thyroid biopsy to collect a sample that may be examined under a microscope
Thyroid Cancer Treatment
The primary form of treatment for thyroid cancer is a thyroidectomy, which removes most or all of the thyroid gland. During this procedure, the thyroid cancer doctor may also remove the lymph nodes in the neck and test them for cancer.
Hormone therapy is a necessary treatment following a thyroidectomy. In this process, the patient takes thyroid hormone medication to compensate for the removed thyroid gland. This hormone also suppresses the production of thyroid-stimulating hormone from the pituitary gland. High levels of the thyroid-stimulating hormone could potentially cause the growth of any remaining cancer cells.
Radioactive iodine treatment may also be necessary following a thyroidectomy. Its purpose is to eliminate any remaining component of the thyroid gland, both cancerous and non-cancerous. This is to minimize risk of recurrence. It may also be used to treat instances of cancer that have spread from the thyroid to other organs as part of the thyroid cancer treatment at our private Los Angeles facility.
External radiation therapy is an effective option in the treatment of thyroid cancer. In this procedure, a machine produces high-focus energy that is then directed towards the cancer, killing cancerous cells. External beam radiation is typically administered for several minutes per session, five days a week. It generally lasts about six weeks and the case is assessed from there.
Chemotherapy, while not commonly used to treat thyroid cancer, can occasionally be used by your thyroid cancer doctor to eliminate the cancerous cells. In this process, cancer-killing drugs are administered to a patient intravenously. These drugs travel quickly through the body and their mission is to kill rapidly growing cells, which includes cancer cells.
Depending upon where a patient receives treatment, clinical trials may be an available option. These are new and potentially groundbreaking methods of curing cancer. The first step in a clinical trial is to determine candidacy. If a patient is a candidate, the next step is a thorough discussion with the delivering doctor to reach a decision. At the Beverly Hills Cancer Center, we are at the forefront of cancer-related clinical trials. You are sure to find among the most leading edge thyroid cancer treatment Los Angeles has available in the field of cancer treatment.
Schedule a Consultation Today!
Your health is important, and we welcome the opportunity to help you heal.
To schedule an appointment, please call Beverly Hills Cancer Center in Beverly Hills, California at (877) 320-5131 or use our interactive Online Appointment Request Form.