Thursday, July 17, 2008

What do I Need to do Before my Thyroid Cancer Surgery?

If you are told you have a positive cancer FNA biopsy result on a thyroid nodule, or they say it is suspicious for cancer, what do you neeed to be done BEFORE the surgery?
First, if you are not seeing a thyroidologist, or an endcrinologist with an interest in thyroid cancer, request a referral.
The Pre-operative screening should include a cancer marker test, thyroglobulin.
A detailed thyroid ultrasound to determine if there is tumor on the other lobes.
The thyroidologist should do an ultrasound lymph node mapping of your neck. 20-80% of patients already have mets in the local nodes around the thyroid. If abnormal nodes are found, an USGFNA for cytology, and Thyroglobulin cancer marker washings should be done.
If positive the original surgery plan will be changed in at least 20-30% of the cases, to include the lateral neck area of the cancer nodes.
Now you can go to surgery, and have the definitive first surgery, and save yourself from the recurrence and need for a second surgery in 1-5 years.
Good Job,


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