What is Thyroid Cancer, Symptoms and Causes
What is thyroid Cancer?
Thyroid cancer is a disease that you get when abnormal cells begin to grow in your thyroid gland. The thyroid gland is shaped like a butterfly and is situated in the front of one’s neck.
Thyroid cancer is usually an uncommon type of cancer. Most people who have it do very well, because the cancer is frequently found early and the treatments work efficiently. After it is treated, thyroid cancer may revisit, sometimes many years right after treatment.
Causes of thyroid Cancer.
Experts don’t determine what causes thyroid cancer. But like other cancers, changes in the DNA of this cell seem to be likely involved. These DNA changes might include changes that are inherited as well as those that happen since you get older.
We usually look like our parents since they’re the source of each of our DNA. But DNA affects greater than just how we seem. It also can affect our risk for creating certain diseases, including some forms of cancer.
[Tweet “There are four major types of thyroid #cancer: papillary, follicular, medullary, and anaplastic.”]
Some genes contain instructions for controlling when our cells grow and divide into new cells. Certain genes that help cells grow and divide or make them live longer than they should are called oncogenes. Other genes that slow down cell division or make cells die at the right time are called tumor suppressor genes. Cancers can be caused by DNA changes that turn on oncogenes or turn off tumor suppressor genes.
People inherit 2 copies of each gene – one from each parent. We can inherit damaged DNA from one or both parents. Most cancers, though, are not caused by inherited gene changes. In these cases, the genes change during a person’s life. They may occur when a cell’s DNA is damaged by something in the environment, like radiation, or they may just be random events that sometimes happen inside a cell, without an outside cause.
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Symptoms of Thyroid Cancer
Thyroid cancer typically doesn’t cause any signs or symptoms early in the disease. The most common signs and symptoms of thyroid cancer include a lump, or thyroid nodule, that can be felt in the neck, trouble swallowing, throat or neck pain, swollen lymph nodes in the neck, cough, and vocal changes. As thyroid cancer grows, it may cause:
- A lump that could be felt through the skin on the neck
- Changes to one’s voice, including increasing hoarseness
- Having issue swallowing
- Pain in one’s neck and throat
- Swollen lymph nodes with your neck
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When to visit a doctor
If you experience any these symptoms, make an appointment with your doctor. Thyroid cancer isn’t common, so your doctor may investigate other causes of your signs or symptoms first.