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Old 04-11-2008, 08:09 PM   #1
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Thyroiditis, nodules, & ultrasound

Saw the surgeon today. No personality!!! But he answered my questions & told me just what he thought. I could have talked to him for hours but he had many patients in the waiting room . He did give me the web site for the practice so I could ask more questions. How's that for being patient friendly.
Here are some of my questions:

1.)
What is the typical timeline for different thyroid cancers to grow? He said he couldn't give me any exact figures. It depends of course on the type of cancer. The most lethal kind can grow in a matter of weeks so most patients don't survive. Anaplastic I think it is called & usually occurs in older patients.

2.) If one has an episode of thyroiditis, will that show up on the ultrasound as an increase in nodule size? Most likely it will. That may have happened to me cause I'm pretty sure I caught a virus the week before at the Dr's office since she had to run home to check on her son who was sick plus the nurse had sick kids too. I get viruses so easily now & they settle right to my thyroid. Luckily, I can take aspirin which calms my throid.

3.) He said that it is most likely my nodules come from just having thyroiditis which promote nodule growth. He says he wouldn't biopsy unless they reached 1.5cm. Plus he said I don't have any risk factors other than age. He doesn't consider my daughter's cancer (papillary with follicular) a risk factor. He said I could probably find a surgeon who would take out my thyroid if I really wanted it out. I said that's okay I would just as soon keep it & monitor it. I don't mine putting up with the thyroiditis.

4.) He said my medical risk factors etc. would be a factor. I'm sure my age was a factor in not having surgery because at 60yrs I could die of something else before thyroid cancer. In fact, I could die from my many drug allergies, a stroke, drug interactions etc to name a few during surgery. He indicated that it would be difficult for me to have surgery.

5.) He offered me some referrals for 2nd opinions which I may consider in the future.

6.) I was surprised that he didn't actually read the ultrasound. He looked at it but I think he pretty much made his decision based on my history, physical exam, & the ultrasound report.

7.) He did ask where I had lived in the past. He was searching for some radiation exposure. He said if I had had radiation exposure in the past, it would have been a different story.

Fam

Last edited by famnd; 04-11-2008 at 08:15 PM.

 
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Old 04-11-2008, 08:41 PM   #2
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Re: Thyroiditis, nodules, & ultrasound

Fam,

I find some of what he says a bit odd. Did he at least read the ultrasound report? The ENT I first went to actually viewed the disc I brought. And for what it is worth, I don't consider 60 old! What kind of a surgeon is he and how many thyroids does he do a year? Does he have much experience with thyroid cancer? I'm not saying you have to have a FNA or surgery, but with a daughter with thyroid cancer I think you might need a second opinion.

Last edited by moderator2; 04-12-2008 at 06:39 AM. Reason: the huge quote!

 
Old 04-12-2008, 09:55 AM   #3
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Re: Thyroiditis, nodules, & ultrasound

I appreciate your input. I don't know how many thyroid cancer pts he takes care of but my Endo says he does most thyroid stuff. He is an ENT. He did read the US report but didn't spend much time looking at the US disc. I found a great article in a radiology magazine on US's. So I did ask him about certain aspects of the US. The most important is were there any microcalcifications which the article said are the most reliable indication on us of Cancer. I'm considering a 2nd opinion. Fam

 
Old 04-12-2008, 05:50 PM   #4
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Re: Thyroiditis, nodules, & ultrasound

I would get another opinion----I had no history of radiation, nor family history of thyroid cancer, nor calcifications on my ultrasound---the ultrasound is best to determine size, but the other factors such as vascularity and calcifications don't work to diagnose cancer alone.

Thyroid cancer is very rare, but anyone with a nodule around 1cm or larger should have a needle biopsy---no matter what your age.

Your doctor seems to think you are very old because you are over 60??? I think you should take his advice, and see other surgeons so you have one ready if you should ever need it.

 
Old 04-14-2008, 05:58 PM   #5
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Re: Thyroiditis, nodules, & ultrasound

Thanks, Reece. I don't think he thought I was so old. I took it as he was just talking in terms of thyroid cancer. Most articles talk about more risk when one is over 60 yrs.

At the moment I doubt if I could have a needle biopsy if my b/p has to be under 140/90 since it is very erratic even on mega doses of meds. I do have an appointment with my former Endo who has at least 30 yrs. of experience. I will try to find another surgeon for a consul. I am willing to wait 6 months at the present time for another US. My largest nodule was 7 or 8 so hopefully I have time.

Your friend who waited 6 yrs, what type of nodule did she have? Did you mean cm instead of mm?

How did you find your nodule? What type was it?

Thank you for all your help. Fam

 
Old 04-15-2008, 04:21 AM   #6
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Re: Thyroiditis, nodules, & ultrasound

My friend's nodule was "hot", just under a cm, and they kept watching, she was in her late forties, but in the end, she had it removed even though they were sure it was benign, and it was cancer.

Mine was different, mine was compressed behind a muscle, I didn't find it until it was 2.5cm, and it was pappillary.

I don't see any problem in waiting six months, on a nodule that size.

 
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