Thyroid Cancer

CUREtology

C. Suzanne Cutter, MD

Surgical Oncology located in Downtown, Los Angeles, CA

Each year in the United States, almost 54,000 cases of thyroid cancer are diagnosed, with women making up almost 75% diagnoses. The good news is that thyroid cancer is highly treatable, especially with the right expert in your corner. Just such a doctor can be found in Dr. Cutter, who diagnoses and treats thyroid cancer at her practice, CUREtology. Dr. Cutter takes a broad approach to thyroid cancer, helping her patients in the downtown Los Angeles area not only get rid of the disease but recover more effectively through holistic medicine. To learn more, call or schedule a consultation using the online booking tool.

Thyroid Cancer Q & A

What is thyroid cancer?

To better understand thyroid cancer, it’s helpful to review the role that your thyroid plays in your body. This butterfly-shaped gland lies beneath your Adam’s apple in the front of your neck and has two main types of cells:

Follicular cells

These cells are responsible for making your thyroid hormones, which control your metabolism.

C cells

These cells produce a hormone that controls how your body uses calcium.

Thyroid cancer can affect either of these two cell types, as well as smaller cell groups, such as the stromal cells and lymphocytes.

It’s important to note that it’s not unusual for your thyroid to develop nodules, most of which aren’t cancerous — only about 2-3 nodules out of every 20. When cancer is present, it’s usually papillary thyroid cancer (8 out of 10 cases), with follicular thyroid cancer coming in a distant second (1 out of 10 cases). Other cases of thyroid cancer diagnoses are rare and may involve lymphoma or your C cells.

How is thyroid cancer diagnosed?

If you have a visible lump or pain in your throat that leads to difficulty swallowing, Dr. Cutter may perform several tests to check for thyroid cancer, including:

  • Blood test
  • Biopsy using a fine needle
  • Advanced imaging, including ultrasound, X-ray, PET, and CT scans

If she locates a mass, she performs a biopsy to determine whether the nodule is cancerous, which governs the next steps.

How is thyroid cancer treated?

The first step in most cases of thyroid cancer is surgery to remove the nodule(s). As a surgical oncologist, Dr. Cutter has extensive experience in this arena. Using minimally invasive techniques, Dr. Cutter typically removes all, or part, of your thyroid. At the same time, she may remove nearby lymph nodes in your neck for testing.

Dr. Cutter may also recommend a postoperative treatment using radioactive iodine, which targets your thyroid cells to destroy any remaining cancer.

Depending upon the tests afterward, you may need to undergo chemotherapy or radiation, and Dr. Cutter works closely with any adjuvant care you may need. She also ensures that you remain as healthy as possible throughout your treatments to boost your body’s own natural healing resources, giving you the tools you need to overcome thyroid cancer.

To learn more about this highly treatable form of cancer, call CUREtology or use the online booking tool to request an appointment.