zoeysmomma0508's Journey with Papillary Carcinoma, Thyroid Cancer

Patient: Thyroid Cancer > Papillary Carcinoma

Patient Info: Newly diagnosed (has not begun treatment), Diagnosed: almost 6 years ago, Female, Age: 29

  1. 1
    almost 6 years ago
    zoeysmomma0508's Avatar

    Decision Point

    Endocrinologist sent me to an ENT surgeon, who gave me my 3 options: 1. Take out half the thyroid and wait for the final pathology report. Advantage: If half the thyroid is taken out then one may not have to take thyroid hormone for the rest of their life. A person can live a normal life with 70% of the time with only half a thyroid. No risk of damaging all of one’s parathyroid glands. There is a reduced risk to only damaging part of the laryngeal nerve. Disadvantage: If cancer is found then a second surgery has to be done to completely remove the entire thyroid. One has to go back to surgery shortly after the first surgery. Going through this extensive surgery once is hard enough. 2. Take out half the thyroid and a frozen section pathology report will be conducted in the OR while you are still in surgery. If it is thyroid carcinoma the surgeon will take out the entire thyroid. If the sample appears benign they will not take out the rest of the thyroid. The final pathology report will still take 2 days. The frozen section is only 70% accurate. Advantage: If the nodule is cancer then the entire thyroid can be taken out during the same surgery. A second surgery will not have to be done. Disadvantage: The frozen section pathology results are only 70% accurate so the final pathology report can come back as non-cancerous or cancerous. So one may still need a second surgery or the complete thyroid surgery could have been unnecessary. 3. Take out the entire thyroid Advantage: A second surgery will not be necessary. Pease of mind that entire thyroid has been removed. Disadvantages: Risks of damaging all of parathyroid glands. The patient would be required to take calcium supplements if all of the parathyroid glands get damaged. Increase risks of damaging laryngeal nerve. If the laryngeal nerve is damage one will get voice changes or hoariness. The patient will have to take thyroid hormone medication for the rest of their life. 4. Do nothing. Not recommended by the surgeon. Advantages: No surgery or thyroid hormone. Disadvantages: If the nodule is cancer then the longer it is in the body the more likely it can spread. This decreases the chance for a success outcome and may decrease one’s life expectancy if the cancer progresses and metastasizes to other locations in the body. The treatment may require more radiation to eradicated cancer. Decided to opt for the partial thyroidectomy, removing only my left side which had the enlarged nodule.

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  2. 2
    almost 6 years ago
    zoeysmomma0508's Avatar

    Surgery

    Procedure or Surgery

    November 4, 2011. Partial thyroidectomy, left side.

    Went as Expected: Agree
    Minimal Recovery: Agree
    Minimal Side Effects: Neutral/NA
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Agree
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  3. 3
    almost 6 years ago
    zoeysmomma0508's Avatar

    Diagnosed

    Oh No

    Diagnosed with papillary carcinoma, November 17th, 2011. Will go in for a follow up with my surgeon/ENT in December to discuss total thyroidectomy and treatment.

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