Cancer is one of the most unpredictable and poorly-understood things that may affect human’s body. Mutations of the body cells make them deathless and give ability to grow and propagate quickly. Moreover, these abnormal cells often spread from their primary location to other part of the body, including the most distant organs.
This may occur anywhere in the organism. It’s not uncommon that malignant cells appear in the butterfly-shaped organ in the neck called thyroid gland. This small but very powerful organ releases thyroid hormone into the bloodstream and regulates body temperature, metabolism, blood pressure and mental performance in this way.
According to the American Cancer Society, more than 53 000 people get new diagnosis of thyroid cancer. And women are much more likely to get it, as three of every four cases are diagnosed in women.
Not only family history and inherited genetic abnormalities play a role in developing thyroid neoplasm. It was found that exposure to high doses of radiation, like radiation treatment of the upper body or radioactive fallout, can significantly raise risks of having cellular mutations in the thyroid gland.
The big problem is that thyroid cancer often stays symptomless until it reaches advanced stage and spreads to other organs. Sometimes symptoms are so mild that people ignore them for a long time.
It’s worth understanding that early detection helps people survive and get successful treatment. So check up these sign and symptoms of thyroid malignancy and examine you gland if noticed any of them in yourself:
#1. Lump in the neck – finding new lump anywhere in the body is a frightening event for most of us. Although specialists claim that 95% of thyroid nodules, felt like a lump in the neck, are benign, you’d better ask your doctor to perform thyroid exam.
#2. Difficulty swallowing – thyroid cancer may put pressure on the esophagus, making it hard to swallow.
#3. Troubles breathing – excessive pressure, caused by thyroid neoplasm on the windpipe, can result in difficulty breathing.
#4. Hoarseness – it may occur because of infection but be aware that long-lasting hoarseness or other changes in the voices may indicate cancer.
#5. Swollen neck – lymph nodes located in the neck may become enlarged when you catch common cold or other infectious disease. But if swelling in the neck doesn’t go away during extended period of time, it may be a warning sign of thyroid cancer.
#6. Pain in the neck or throat – sore throat is a common symptom, which may be caused by wide variety of factors. But if it lasts several weeks, it’s time to visit healthcare specialist.