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Cancer of the thyroid occurs in the butterfly-shaped gland at the base of the neck. The cause of thyroid cancer is poorly understood but may involve a combination of genetic and environmental factors. Some people have no symptoms. To know more about thyroid cancer, see the following article...

What is the Thyroid Gland?

The thyroid gland is a butterfly-shaped endocrine gland that is normally located in the lower front of the neck. The thyroid’s job is to make thyroid hormones, which are secreted into the blood and then carried to every tissue in the body. The thyroid hormone helps the body use energy, stay warm, and keep the brain, heart, muscles, and other organs working as they should.

Prevalence of Thyroid Cancer

In the past 3 decades, there has been a dramatic increase in the number of people diagnosed with thyroid cancer. According to the National Cancer Institute (NCI)'s Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results Program, more than 500,000 people were living with thyroid cancer in the United States in 2011.

Most recently, the number of new cases of thyroid cancer is estimated to be 12.9 per 100,000 men and women annually, and the number of associated deaths is estimated to be 0.5 per 100,000 men and women annually. Still, the lifetime risk for thyroid cancer is approximately 1.1%, and the 5-year survival rate has risen to 97.8% because almost 70% of cases are now diagnosed at an early stage when the cancer is localized at the gland.

What are the types of Thyroid Cancer?

  • PAPILLARY THYROID CANCER. Papillary thyroid cancer is the most common type, making up about 70% to 80% of all thyroid cancers. Papillary thyroid cancer can occur at any age. It tends to grow slowly and often spreads to lymph nodes in the neck. Papillary cancer has a generally excellent outlook, even if there is a spread to the lymph nodes.
  • FOLLICULAR THYROID CANCER. Follicular thyroid cancer makes up about 10% to 15% of all thyroid cancers in the United States. Follicular cancer can spread through the blood to distant organs, particularly the lungs and bones.

Papillary and follicular thyroid cancers are also known as well–Differentiated Thyroid Cancers (DTC). 

What are the symptoms of thyroid cancer?

Thyroid cancer often presents as a lump or nodule in the thyroid and usually does not cause any other symptoms. Blood tests generally do not help to find thyroid cancer and thyroid blood tests such as TSH are usually normal, even when cancer is present. A neck examination by your doctor is a common way in which thyroid nodules and thyroid cancer are found. Often, thyroid nodules are discovered incidentally on imaging tests like CT scans and neck ultrasounds done for completely unrelated reasons. You may have found a thyroid nodule by noticing a lump in your neck while looking in a mirror, buttoning your collar, or fastening a necklace. Rarely, thyroid cancers and nodules may cause symptoms. You may complain of pain in the neck, jaw, or ear. If a nodule is large enough to compress your windpipe or esophagus, it may cause difficulty with breathing, and swallowing, or cause a “tickle in the throat” sensation. Even less commonly, you may develop hoarseness if thyroid cancer invades the nerve that controls your vocal cords. Cancers arising in thyroid nodules generally do not cause symptoms, and thyroid function tests are typically normal even when you have cancer. The best way to find a thyroid nodule is to make sure that your doctor examines your neck as part of your periodic check-up.

Diagnostic Workup

If your doctor suspects from your physical exam and ultrasound that you may have cancer, you will need to have a fine needle aspiration biopsy. The results of the biopsy can be highly suggestive of thyroid cancer and will prompt surgical treatment. Thyroid cancer can only be diagnosed with certainty after the nodule is removed surgically

Fine-Needle Aspiration Biopsy

If the initial workup suggests a nonfunctional nodule with suspicious sonographic features, an FNA biopsy should be performed, because it remains the most accurate, cost-effective, and best diagnostic method for evaluating nodules. 

for FNA biopsy, PT Isotekindo Intertama has a featured product CY-PREP ™ CY-100 Processor.

PT Isotekindo Intertama is a distributor of the CY-PREP ™ CY-100 Processor,  CY-PREP ™ CY-100 Processor products are as follows:

  • Liquid media to contain, transport, and preserve test samples using CY-PREP™ Pap Test Preservation Solution
    1. Protect the sample, and hold it for 3 weeks at room temperature (15-30 °C). Samples are safe from dryness & damage
    2. Minimizes the risk of important samples being left in the sampling device
    3. Collect all cervical samples so that all sample cells can be examined
    4. Provide enough test samples so that the patient does not need to re-samples for follow-up tests
  • Separating the inspection target material from lenders and dirt using a dual filterBenefit:
    1. Make a thin layer of preparation
    2. Cells become clearer when examined because the cell staining process becomes more perfect and adheres better
  • Glass slide for sample attachment using IHC link glass slide
    1. Make a thin layer of preparation
    2. Cells become clearer when examined because the cell staining process becomes more perfect and adheres better

What is the treatment for Thyroid Cancer?

  1. Surgery
  2. Radioactive iodine therapy 
  3. Tyrosine Kinase Inhibitors



  1. American Thyroid Assosiation. (2023) Thyroid Cancer.
  2. Insert Kit CY-PREP ™ CY-100 Processor.
  3. Nguyen QT, Lee EJ, Huang MG, Park YI, Khullar A, Plodkowski RA. (2015) Diagnosis and treatment of patients with thyroid cancer. Am Health Drug Benefits.
Liquid Based Cytology
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