Thyroid Cancer Essay

1145 words - 5 pages

Thyroid Cancer is a thyroid neoplasm that develops in the thyroid gland. The thyroid gland consists of two large lobes that are connected by the isthmus and is located below the larynx on both sides of the trachea. The gland secretes hormones from the hypothalamus that may be stored in the colloid or released into the blood in capillaries. In the endocrine system, the thyroid gland secretes hormones that act on cells with specific receptors called target cells. When cancer develops in the thyroid, the production of hormones is disrupted. The cancer cells in the thyroid do not grow or divide normally and can develop into growths or tumors.
The cause of thyroid cancer has not been discovered; however research shows that people with certain risk factors have a higher danger of developing thyroid cancer (MedicineNet). Women are at a higher risk than men, and most cases occur in people ages 30-50. Scientists have also discovered that thyroid cancer can be linked to genetics. If further research is conducted, researchers may be able to detect cancer earlier.
The four types of thyroid cancer are papillary, follicular, medullary, and anaplastic. Papillary thyroid cancer is the most common form of thyroid cancer and if it is not treated early, it can spread throughout the body to sites such as the lungs and the bones. When the papillary thyroid cancer spreads to the lymph nodes, they become enlarged. Follicular thyroid cancer is more aggressive than thyroid cancer. The cancer develops mostly in an older age group and is less common in children. In rare cases, follicular thyroid cancer occurs after radiation therapy and it is uncommon that the cancer will spread to lymph nodes, bones, or lungs. Follicular cancer may invade vascular structures such as the veins and arteries. Medullary cancer originates from the parafollicular cells in the upper central lobe of the thyroid. The cancer has a low cure rate if the cancer spreads to the liver, bone, brain, or adrenal medulla. Anaplastic thyroid cancer is the least common cancer, but is most deadly and the most difficult to cure. In many cases, the cancer will spread to lymph nodes of the neck and can spread to lungs or bones. The cancer requires an aggressive treatment plan in order to be effective.
Cancer begins in the cells, which combine to make tissue in the body. Healthy functioning cells grow and divide to form new cells when cells are needed. Normal cells will grow and then die to make room for new cells. Cancer cells work differently because new cells form when the body does not need them and old and damaged cells do not die. Instead, the extra cells build up and form tissue called a growth or a tumor. Nodules are growth on the thyroid. The two types are benign nodules, which are not cancer and malignant nodules, which are cancer. Cancer cells are very dangerous because the cells can separate from the original tumor and spread to other organs. Metastasis is the spreading of cancer and can...

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