Call Now
Representing injured people nationwide

Potential Causes & Symptoms of Thyroid Cancer

April 29, 2024 In Ozempic

Thyroid cancer arises in the thyroid gland, a vital part of the endocrine system located at the base of the neck. While often initially silent, this illness can develop into a serious health concern if not caught early.

This type of cancer may develop due to various factors, including genetic predispositions and environmental exposures like radiation. There is also current research on whether Ozempic is capable of causing thyroid cancer in humans. If you believe that you have thyroid cancer, it is essential to seek medical care as soon as you possibly can.

What Is Thyroid Cancer?

Thyroid cancer develops in the thyroid gland, an essential organ that helps regulate metabolic processes through hormone production. This condition may not show any symptoms at first, which can make it difficult to diagnose until its later stages.

Primarily, thyroid cancers are categorized based on the appearance of the cells observed under a microscope. The cell types involved typically dictate the cancer’s aggressiveness, its treatment options, and the patient’s prognosis. The different types of thyroid cancer may include:

  • Differentiated thyroid cancers: These make up the majority of cases and originate from follicular cells. They include papillary thyroid cancer, which usually remains localized but can spread to lymph nodes; follicular thyroid cancer, which may spread to lungs and bones; Hurthle cell thyroid cancer, which is more aggressive and can spread through the body; and poorly differentiated thyroid cancer, a very rare and aggressive form of the disease.
  • Anaplastic thyroid cancer: This extremely aggressive and fast-growing condition is often difficult to treat effectively. Anaplastic thyroid cancer commonly affects people over the age of 60 and can lead to painful symptoms, such as neck swelling.
  • Medullary thyroid cancer: This condition develops from C cells, which produce the hormone calcitonin. Some cases of medullary thyroid cancer result from genetic mutations and can be hereditary. Early detection is possible through elevated blood calcitonin levels.

Potential Causes of Thyroid Cancer

Thyroid cancer begins when mutations occur in the DNA of thyroid cells. These mutations cause cells to multiply rapidly and live longer than normal cells. As these abnormal cells accumulate, they form a mass or tumor. The tumor can invade nearby tissues and may spread to other parts of the body.

Although there is no one cause of thyroid cancer, several factors can increase a person’s risk for the disease. These include:

  • Gender and Hormones: Thyroid cancer is more prevalent in women than men. Researchers believe this may be linked to estrogen, a hormone more abundant in women, which could influence the growth of thyroid cells.
  • Radiation Exposure: Exposure to high levels of radiation, particularly in the head and neck areas from medical treatments, significantly increases the risk of developing thyroid cancer. Even radiation exposure from environmental sources or accidents can raise the risk.
  • Genetic Factors: Certain inherited genetic conditions enhance the susceptibility to thyroid cancer. These include familial medullary thyroid cancer, multiple endocrine neoplasia types 1 and 2, Cowden syndrome, and familial adenomatous polyposis. People with a family history of thyroid cancer should consider genetic screening and schedule regular check-ups.
  • Defective Medications: Some pharmaceuticals have been linked to an increased risk of developing thyroid cancer. Chemicals that interfere with thyroid function or trigger abnormal cell growth can lead to the formation of cancerous tumors. Patients undergoing treatment with these medications should have their thyroid function monitored regularly to detect any early signs of disease.

Common Symptoms of Thyroid Cancer

In its early stages, thyroid cancer typically does not present any symptoms. However, as the cancer progresses, several signs may become evident. Identifying these symptoms early can help you get the treatment that you need and potentially lead to a more favorable prognosis.

If you notice any of the following signs, seek medical attention right away:

  • Neck Lump or Nodule: One of the most common signs is a lump in the neck that can be felt through the skin. These nodules are typically painless but noticeable upon touch.
  • Changes in Voice: Thyroid cancer can lead to hoarseness or other voice changes, which do not go away. This is caused by the tumor impacting the nerve that controls the vocal cords.
  • Difficulty Swallowing and Breathing: As the tumor grows, it may press on the trachea or esophagus, leading to difficulty swallowing or breathing. You may feel a sensation of tightness in the throat.
  • Neck Pain: You may also experience pain in the front of the neck, which can sometimes extend up to the ears. This pain can result from the growth of the tumor.
  • Swollen Lymph Nodes: The lymph nodes are located on the sides of your neck, as well as other parts of the body. Enlarged lymph nodes can indicate the spread of thyroid cancer cells to these nodes.
  • Persistent Cough: A continuous cough that is not associated with a cold or other respiratory condition may be a sign of thyroid cancer, especially if other symptoms are present.

The Long-Term Prognosis for Thyroid Cancer

The long-term prognosis for thyroid cancer varies significantly based on the type and stage of cancer at diagnosis. Papillary thyroid cancer, the most common type, has a good prognosis with a five-year relative survival rate of over 99.5% for localized stages. Even when the disease has progressed, the survival rate remains high at 99% for regional spread and 74% for distant spread.

Anaplastic thyroid cancer, known for its aggressiveness, has much lower survival rates. The five-year relative survival rate is only 39% at a localized stage, decreasing to 11% regionally and 4% with distant spread. The overall rate for all stages combined stands at 8%.

Your Legal Options If Your Cancer Is Related to a Defective Drug

If your thyroid cancer diagnosis is linked to a defective drug, you have the right to seek legal recourse. You could pursue a lawsuit against the manufacturer of the medication for failing to disclose this risk and hold the company accountable for your medical expenses, pain and suffering, and other damages.

Defective drug lawsuits can be complex, which is why you need an attorney on your side. A lawyer specializing in defective drug cases can help by investigating your case, gathering evidence, and representing your interests against large corporate legal teams. To learn more about the legal process, contact an attorney as soon as possible and begin your journey to financial recovery.