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Biopsy Back - Questions

POG
Posts: 10
Joined: Sep 2008

I am looking for information from experienced members. FNA after ultrasound found atypical cells in a 2.1 cm fixed, solid nodule with small cystic component. It is a solitary dominant nodule in multi nodular thyroid. I am 55 year old woman and I may have had radiaton treatment in '50's as a child to treat tonsillitis and I am severely allergic to iodine contrast dye. I am asymptomatic except for slight hoarsness occasionally. No family history of thyroid cancer. The nodule was found incidentally on CT scan and seen as undifferentiated hypodensity. My thyroid lab work (TSH & T Free 4) is normal. My ENT - a surgeon who specializes in thyroid disease - advises that I need surgery to confirm cancer or not. He says I may only need the one lobe where the dominant nodule is located removed. I am very reluctant to have a functional thyroid (or even 1/2 of it) removed and I am definitely not a fan of surgical intervention unless absolutely essential. Could my case be medically managed and the nodule watched for growth? Do you think I need surgery? Should I get a second opinion first? My ENT is very good and well regarded however there is a major cancer center close to home where I could go for consult.

walshk
Posts: 3
Joined: Sep 2008

I had my thyroid out on 9-5-08. I am a 27 year old women and had no symptoms besides the fact that the nodule was palpable and found during my pregnancy (I have two beautiful boys 3 and 9 weeks). The first biopsy came back benign then the second came back suspicious for malignancy 6 months later. Because of the growth in the nodule and change in pathology they decided to take it out. It was not fun, but with a positive attitude not too bad either. I was home and needed help for a week, but now I feel fine... A little tired because I have to wait for my TSH to up for the radioiodine treatment and as far as that, I don't so why you couldn't have regular radiation treatments if you can not do RAI?? Something to talk to your doc about. I was of the mindset that if it is cancer (which it was) why keep it in my body and observe when I can have it removed? They also left the RAI up to me as to whether or not I needed it, but why not be on the safe side:)
Kelly

gailaj
Posts: 36
Joined: Jun 2008

Hi Patty - Sorry that atypical cells were found. I would say if you are unsure of what to do next, by all means go for the second opinion, especially at a cancer center. It may give you more peace of mind about making a decision.

Personally, I am inclined to agree with Kelly -- I felt the same way, if it's cancer (or could be cancer), just get it out....

Wishing you well...Gail

(PS - my last reply to "POG's" previous post has my history - in brief, total thyroidectomy 3/20/08 for small pap cancer, no RAI recommended).

POG
Posts: 10
Joined: Sep 2008

Thank you for responding again. You have been a big help to me at this early stage of figuring it all out. I guess my reluctance is the 'could be' part. I tend to be a leave well enough alone kind of person and also a risk taker. So it is good to hear the "you might as well get it out just in case" point of view. I may need to become a better safe than sorry person. I am so glad to hear your story and that you were able to get the small pap cancer out and were spared the RAI treatment. And I know you must feel you made a very good decision because, perhaps, if you had waited longer more extensive surgery or follow up might have been needed.

Thanks for the prodding. I would probably just stay in denial state until Christmas at least. So off to Moffit I go to help me make a decision and to act - just in case. Surgery sounds extreme when I think about it - although you persude me that it may be more extreme not to do anything and "hope" for the best. Good advice...and free, too! Thanks much!

POG
Posts: 10
Joined: Sep 2008

Thank you, Kelly, for taking the time to respond. Mine is palpable, too, but other than that -and the "atypical" results - I feel fine so hard to get motivated to go feel unfine. :) However, you are correct that probably best to just get it out just in case. I have two happy and successful all grown children (24 and 26) about to earn graduate degrees and get married. And, I definitely want to be around to be grandnanny to their children to make life easier for them while they work. Plus the hard part of raising them is over and I want to enjoy the fruits of my labor. So if you could manage with two little ones at home - I will be just fine...so I will just go for it. I am so glad to hear you are recovering and I hope you continue to feel well with your medication regulated. You sound like a very positive and strong person. My very best wishes and prayers for a long and happy life for you. Patty

POG
Posts: 10
Joined: Sep 2008

Good luck with the RAI treatement, too. With two little ones at home, get rid of every speck fo cancer no matter what it takes! I hope you have good help and family to help you and care for you and the little guys. Let me know how you do with the RAI treatment...stay positive and take good care of yourself. I will say lots of prayers for you and send good karma your way. Best~ Patty

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