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I-131 and Getting Pregnant

Posts: 1
Joined: Aug 2013

On Feb 6th, 2013 I had a total Thyroidectomy, and in March I believe I had 132 of the I-131. I stayed in the Hospital for 2 nights and away from everyone for an additional 3 days. Now I'm almost 6 months out, and have been told that I need to do a follow-up treatment which include the Thyrogen injections so I do not have to go off my thryoid medications. I will again have to do the Low Iodine Diet and will have a much smaller dose of the I-131. My husband and I were trying to start a family a year before they found the cancer, and now I am wondering when the right time we can start again. My doctor mentioned a year after the I-131, but everywhere I am reading says 6 months-12 months. I am not sure if he means 12 months from the first I-131 as it was extremely strong or if he means this next small dosage in September. Has anyone gotten pregnant, had any problems or side effects? Or does anyone ave any other information their doctors gave you on when its safe to try? All help would be greatly appreciated as I didn't find any other forums that had this topic.

Baldy's picture
Posts: 243
Joined: Mar 2011


Are you sure they're giving you a second dose of I-131?  If they're scanning to see where and how much the RAI uptake is, I think they use I-123.  I-123 is less radiactive than I-131 (a less dangerous type of radiation) and it's half life is much shorter than I-131 too.

If I were you, I would ask the nuclear medicine doctor who will be giving you (or at least supervising) this RAI that you're just about to take.  Tell them exactly what you've done so far and ask them what you can expect to do in the future.  (You'll probably also want to wait to see the results of the scan before you decide when to start trying again.)  They're more knowledgable about the effects and side effects of RAI than the doctor who is ordering the treatment (endocrinologist or oncologist or whatever).

If I remember correctly, when I was given the I-123 scan dose 6-months out, it was a nurse or tecnician who did it.  You might do well to call the clinic where you're getting the dose to make sure a nuclear medicine doctor is there.  It might also be a good idea to let them know what you'll be asking about.  Insist on talking to the nuclear medicine doctor.


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