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Old 06-12-2008, 06:18 PM   #1
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Question about thyroid cancer and the radiation pill

Hi all,

I just had a co-worker who was diagnosed with thyroid cancer. She has had lumps or nodules on her neck since high school (she's in her late 40's now), but they never bothered her until recently. The dr. decided to remove the lumps and both her thyroids. However, in the meantime, she found out that she has diabetes and so the surgery was post-poned. The sugars finally got under control and she had her surgery. They thought what they removed was originally benign, but turns out the pathology came back as cancerous. She was recently given a positive diagnosis of thyroid cancer. She is a smoker, but the dr. told her that the smoking didn't cause her thyroid cancer. Anyway, she has been told to go off her thyroid medication and that when her thyroid level reaches 30, then they are going to do one round of radiation therapy. They are not going to go back in and open her up again. The radiation therapy is in the form of a pill. She has been telling me that she has to be in isolation for 3 days and that she can't come within 6 ft. of anyone. I guess she also needs to clean anything that she contaminates. My question is this - is it truly safe for her to come back after the 3 days and share an office with me? I have a school age child at home, as well as pets and a significant other. Although I understand this treatment is necessary and I do have compassion for her, at the same time, I am naturally concerned for my own safety, as well as that of my family that I will be coming home to. She will also obviously be using other "community" items throughout our office building. How safe is this method of radiation to those around her after the 3 day period is over with? I sit in the same office with her, so I will be the one to be the most directly exposed to her when she returns back to work.

Thanks.

danni

 
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Old 06-12-2008, 08:55 PM   #2
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Re: Question about thyroid cancer and the radiation pill

My mother had this treatment twice for her thyroid cancer- with a gap of about a year in between. She had already had surgery & the cancer had metastasised. She was isolated for 5 days each time as I remember, - we were allowed to visit her but had to stay behind a lead barrier.

I suppose it depends on the dose that is received. After my mother came home she had clear instructions about contact. She couldn't nurse, cuddle or hold any babies or children or pets, & could only have brief physical contact with adults.

I'm sure the hospital will give very clear instructions as to what contact is safe.
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Old 06-13-2008, 10:27 AM   #3
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Re: Question about thyroid cancer and the radiation pill

Quote:
Originally Posted by dannic1 View Post
Hi all,

I just had a co-worker who was diagnosed with thyroid cancer. She has had lumps or nodules on her neck since high school (she's in her late 40's now), but they never bothered her until recently. The dr. decided to remove the lumps and both her thyroids. However, in the meantime, she found out that she has diabetes and so the surgery was post-poned. The sugars finally got under control and she had her surgery. They thought what they removed was originally benign, but turns out the pathology came back as cancerous. She was recently given a positive diagnosis of thyroid cancer. She is a smoker, but the dr. told her that the smoking didn't cause her thyroid cancer. Anyway, she has been told to go off her thyroid medication and that when her thyroid level reaches 30, then they are going to do one round of radiation therapy. They are not going to go back in and open her up again. The radiation therapy is in the form of a pill. She has been telling me that she has to be in isolation for 3 days and that she can't come within 6 ft. of anyone. I guess she also needs to clean anything that she contaminates. My question is this - is it truly safe for her to come back after the 3 days and share an office with me? I have a school age child at home, as well as pets and a significant other. Although I understand this treatment is necessary and I do have compassion for her, at the same time, I am naturally concerned for my own safety, as well as that of my family that I will be coming home to. She will also obviously be using other "community" items throughout our office building. How safe is this method of radiation to those around her after the 3 day period is over with? I sit in the same office with her, so I will be the one to be the most directly exposed to her when she returns back to work.

Thanks.

danni
Go to the list of Health Issues and scroll down to thyroid problems. There is a large number of posts and it is a lot more active right now than the cancer one is. You can even do a search of just those posts that are already there and it will show you all of them that talk about the radiation for thyroid.

 
Old 07-04-2008, 01:38 PM   #4
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lynnbo HB User
Re: Question about thyroid cancer and the radiation pill

Hello,
I had the same treatment done. I came back to the radiation clinic after three days to do a radiation scan. If the number is less than 2 ( i don't remember the unit), then i was no longer considered to be a thread to anyone around me.
My number was .01 when i came to contact with people again, which was only 3 days after the treatment. It really depends on the dose and how fast this person got rid of her radiation materials.

 
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