Thyroid cancer is rare - 1% of malignancies and 0.2% of cancer deaths in the US. Incidence is increasing, which may, in part, be related to increased detection of subclinical disease by extensive use of ultrasound and FNA. Female:male ratio of 3:1. Incidence begins increasing in teenage years, peaking in the fifth decade. Prior radiation exposure is the main environmental factor linked to development. It can result in benign (goiter, nodular disease) and malignant thyroid disease. Radiation induced tumors are usually well-differentiated and behave similar to spontaneous thyroid cancer. Periodic clinical and biochemical testing (serum thyroglobulin) is prudent for those who have undergone prior thyroid irradiation (including incidental irradiation during mantle or head and neck radiation). No evidence to support increased incidence of medullary or anaplastic thyroid cancer in patients previously exposed to radiation.
KeywordsThyroid Cancer Papillary Thyroid Carcinoma Regional Lymph Node Metastasis Medullary Thyroid Cancer Anaplastic Thyroid Carcinoma
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