Thyroid cancer is the fastest growing cancer in the United States.
- By: Mark Urken, MD
- August 31, 2012 in For Patients
The American Society of Clinical Oncology estimates that 56,460 adults in the United States (13,250 men and 43,210 women) will be diagnosed with thyroid cancer this year. It is currently the fastest-growing cancer in America. How much is due to an increase in surveillance or screenings and how much is due to a biological change in disease prevalence is uncertain. The lack of symptoms also means that, in some cases, the disease progresses to advanced stages before people are aware they have a thyroid problem.
The first indication of thyroid cancer is the discovery of a lump in the neck within the thyroid gland. The diagnosis is often determined by an ultrasound-guided fine needle aspiration. In some circumstances where cytology is inconclusive, diagnosis of the tumor may involve the removal of a portion of the gland.