Thyroid Awareness Month

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Anatomical Drawing of the Thyroid

What is the Thyroid?

The thyroid is a small gland located in the base of the neck. It is shaped like a butterfly and produces thyroid hormones. Thyroid hormones are very important because they influence how all other bodily cells, tissues and organs function. For instance, your heart, brain, liver and kidney all depend on the correct amount of thyroid hormone to do their jobs properly.
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Anatomical Drawing of the Thyroid

Thyroid Dysfunction

Thyroid dysfunction occurs when the thyroid produces either too much or too little thyroid hormone. This is a problem because it disrupts so many other functions in your body. If your thyroid is making too much hormone, the condition is called hyperthyroidism . Or, if it is producing too little hormone, you have hypothyroidism. Also, the thyroid can develop lumps called nodules. They’re usually not cancerous, but in some cases may be.
Different Types of Thyroid Cancer: An Overview
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Thyroid cancer can recur up to 30 years later!

Women are 3 times more likely than men to be affected by this disease. It is also one of the most common cancers to affect young people between the ages of 15–24.

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60,000 New Cases of Thyroid Cancer are Diagnosed Every Year

Thyroid cancer has become more and more prevalent in the past few years and is now the most common endocrine malignancy. There are 4 types of thyroid cancer (papillary, follicular, medullary and anaplastic) each with their own incidence rate and prognosis. Papillary and follicular thyroid cancers are considered differentiated thyroid cancer (DTC). DTC is a common malignancy that comprises the majority (85–95%) of these cases. Although surgery is a widely accepted method of treatment for DTC, the extent of surgical management is still debated in many cases.

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