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Old 04-15-2009, 01:01 PM   #1
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Partial thyroidectomy; follicular carcinoma

Hi everyone!
I need some input on the situation I have found myself in regarding my thyroid.
In December, I had an MRI on my neck and upper spine to try to determine the source of the chronic pain I had been experiencing. A incidental, one inch mass was found on my right thyroid with several tiny nodules on the left.

I had the ultrasound and FNA, which showed some follicular and hurthle cells. The ENT told me that the chance of it being malignant was small but it was best to go ahead and remove it and that she planned to only take out the right half unless the frozen section indicated cancer, or she saw something she didnít like when she operated. (She actually put things in more technical terms, but I am aiming for brevity so as not to bore the pants off of you)

I had the partial thyroidectomy last week. We were told that the frozen section did not show any cancer and that she did not anticipate any surprises in the final pathology report. I went to have my stitches out yesterday and...you guessed it....surprise! Follicular carcinoma. The ENT says the nodules on the left are ďjust specks, think BB sizeĒ and at this point she feels that the risk of another surgery to remove the left side out weighs the benefit of removing it and that the chances of it being cancer are small. (hmm, was that an echo?) Her plan is to treat with synthroid to stop the thyroid from producing itís own hormone, and therefor shrink the remaining gland.

I am scheduled for a bone scan and a neck/lung scan next week to make sure there is no mets.(sorry, canít spell the whole word!)

I will of course keep the appointment for the scans, but I am a little concerned about her lack of concern about the left lobe having nodules. Even if it is only a few small, BB sized ones.

Does anyone else have any experience with a similar situation?
Would you be comfortable with leaving the left half in?
Thanks in advance for your input.

 
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Old 04-15-2009, 01:19 PM   #2
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Re: Partial thyroidectomy; follicular carcinoma

I would not feel comfortable leaving the other 1/2 in......
I don't think another surgery will be that taxing on you.....maybe wait a few weeks but i wouldn't leave it there.......
if this doctor won't cooperate, get a 2nd opinion.

 
Old 04-15-2009, 01:21 PM   #3
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Re: Partial thyroidectomy; follicular carcinoma

Having thyroid cancer for going on 4 yrs, I am bombarded with information. You might want to pose this on the Thyca board---they are affiliated with the Thyroid cancer ***. From my memory, I can't recall anyone living with cancer on a lobe. Everyone goes back to have it removed. Some even go back in a couple of weeks!! Most of us have the entire thyroid removed for this reason. One half of a thyroid serves no purpose. Being on thyroid replacement hormone is no big deal.

 
Old 04-15-2009, 01:25 PM   #4
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Re: Partial thyroidectomy; follicular carcinoma

I am confused as to why my reference was deleted. Would the American Cancer society be deleted too? It is a shame we cannot tell others about the biggest resource of thyroid cancer information in the world here. I learned about it by googling---I hope you will be as lucky.

 
Old 04-16-2009, 07:59 AM   #5
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Re: Partial thyroidectomy; follicular carcinoma

Thanks for the input. I am definately considering the second opinion. Should I look for and Endo? Another ENT? An onocologist?

 
Old 04-16-2009, 08:01 AM   #6
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Re: Partial thyroidectomy; follicular carcinoma

go for the ENT - they're the one that will do surgery

 
Old 04-16-2009, 09:43 AM   #7
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Re: Partial thyroidectomy; follicular carcinoma

Quote:
Originally Posted by rosequartz View Post
go for the ENT - they're the one that will do surgery
From my experience, most thyroid cancer patients go to surgeons who specialize in thyroid cancer. I imagine there are some ENT's who do see a lot of thyroid cancer, but I would want someone who has had a lot of experience---especially working around parathyroid glands and vocal chords.

Endocrinologists usually follow thyroid cancer patients.

 
Old 04-16-2009, 11:05 AM   #8
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Re: Partial thyroidectomy; follicular carcinoma

There are several people on this board who have had Surgery for their thyroid cancer and several who have had partials removal and had to go back for a TT...... You can use an ENT, Vascular surgeon, Head and Neck surgeon or a General surgeon. Your Endo will make the recommendation.....

I myself would prefer to go to someone that does alot of Thyroid surgery.

I have a neck full of nodules and have done my best NOT to have surgery but truthfully? If I had cancer in one side I would ask to have entire gland out. Especially if they are concerned enough to look for Mets..... Just my own opinion....

Good luck and always ask for a copy of your Pathology reports to keep...

Oleander

 
Old 04-16-2009, 11:09 AM   #9
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Re: Partial thyroidectomy; follicular carcinoma

Linda, Here is a briefing for you........ FYI. You have to get any other website approved before posting, also no business names with the exception of Physician's and hospitals... Also if you have any work background of Medical or specialty type do not name it in your posts... Like let's say you are a nurse.......do not say that in posts because this is to be a peer to peer posting board...... you can however send a private message to others. Also do not post your email address...... Just letting you know since some of us have learned the rules the hard way.
This board is wonderful place and I could not have survived without it the last 3 years.

Oleander

 
Old 05-01-2009, 11:06 AM   #10
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Re: Partial thyroidectomy; follicular carcinoma

Juco,

Hello! I am in a very similar situation.

Last week I had a partial thyroidectomy to remove a 3cm nodule on my left side. (I also have a 1cm nodule on my right side). Well, during surgery the frozen section sample could not be determined if it was cancer or not. Earlier this week when I went to get my stitches out - I received the same surprise as you ... follicular carcinoma. It was explained to me by my ENT as well as research I have done on my own - that this type of thryoid cancer is hard to detect on ultrasounds & FNA's ... Endo's were giving me the 50/50 % factor.

So, I am now scheduled for June to remove the right side - complete thyroidectomy. Personally, I can't wait to have this thing done & over with - it has literally been a "pain in the neck" for a very long time!

I have struggled over the past 10 years with Hashimotos & Hypo. Synthroid became my worst nightmare & enemy (but that's a whole other story .... ).

Only you know what's best for you ... but in my opinion - I wouldn't take the risk of having the potential for it to spread.

With that - I can honestly say "I know what you are going through ..." Please feel free to email anytime if you would like to talk.

Hang in there,
Kim

Last edited by Kim5; 05-01-2009 at 11:07 AM.

 
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