Thyroid Cancer Is Almost Always Over-Diagnosed

Posted On : November 12, 2014,   Time : 7:14 am

Is thyroid cancer the most over-diagnosed cancer of them all?

That appears to be the case in South Korea, where the number of thyroid cancer cases are 15 times higher than they were 20 years ago, the New York Times has reported, citing a study recently published in the New England Journal of Medicine. The number of thyroid cancer cases diagnosed in the U.S. have doubled during that same period.

Researchers say that the number of cases have grown due to the fact that clinicians have zeroed in on tiny and often harmless tumors and then treating them aggressively.

However, the mortality rate for thyroid cancer has remained stable for many years, even though the number of cases diagnosedoctor patientd is rising faster than any other form of cancer, according to the American Cancer Society. That organization attributes the use of new ultrasound techniques to detecting small cancer nodules that would have not been noticed in the past.

Nevertheless, there will be fewer than 1,900 deaths from thyroid cancer in the U.S. this year, even though nearly 63,000 new cases will be diagnosed. The survival rate for the disease in all but the most advanced stages is nearly 100 percent.

“Left alone, (the cancers) would probably never cause problems,” the New York Times said, noting that thyroid tumors appear in as many as a third of autopsies where another cause of death has been determined.

If you or a family member have had a recent thyroid cancer diagnosis and are unsure how to proceed, visit
Read the New York Times article here

See what the American Cancer Society has to say about thyroid cancer here

Get more information on the New England Journal of Medicine study here

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