Why the Biggest “Myths” About Thyroid Cancer May Be Right?

Amina Ahmad   by Amina Ahmad, MS, Biotechnology    Last updated on September 27, 2019,

thyroid cancer myth

 

There are multiple on-going clinical trials and researches which result in new and improved treatments for thyroid cancer. Thyroid cancer is a relatively rare type of cancer when compared to other cancers. Some common conditions which trigger thyroid problems can be gene manipulation, autoimmune attack, nutritional deficiencies, toxins in the environment, etc. Targeted radiotherapy is a flourishing treatment in the current scenario to wipe off thyroid cancer.

What a Thyroid Cancer Patient Feels within?

People who suffer from thyroid cancer describe it as troubling experience. While speaking to many patients, we realized one common thing in most patients that the patients did not expect the problem at all and the diagnosis of thyroid cancer came as a total shock to them.

Most patients of thyroid cancer expressed that being diagnosed with the word ‘cancer’ in itself is devastating but after being successfully treated they felt happy and are leading a normal life. There were also patients who expressed their worry about how their scar might appear after the surgical procedure and what quality of life will they live after the removal of thyroid gland.

Some myths related to thyroid cancer: Can they be true?

Some common myths in people suffering from thyroid cancer can actually become true. These myths might sometimes be true depending upon the situations. Some of such myths are listed below:

Lumps and thyroid cancer

Most common myth in people with thyroid diseases is that any swelling or a lump in the neck is always due to thyroid cancer. Lumps are not necessarily due to thyroid cancer or goiter. Lump can also appear due to a swollen lymph nodes or cyst formation. This inflammation on the neck is supposed to be a myth but in multiple cases, this myth has proven to be correct as swelling in the neck is a known symptom of thyroid cancer.

Food and thyroid cancer

Another myth is that some foods are known to reduce the risk of thyroid cancer. There is no evidence to prove that food eliminates cancer from the body. But this myth seem to become true when doctors suggest consumption of healthy diet as there are many foods which are believed to have anti-carcinogenic properties that reduce the risk of thyroid cancer. Similarly, there are some foods that are considered to increase the risk of cancer.

Genetics and thyroid cancer

One of the biggest myths in thyroid cancer patients is that you will also have cancer if an ancestor had it. There are several pieces of research which provide evidence that genetics is one major risk factor in acquiring thyroid cancer. But, there is also evidence that genes cannot always be blamed for attaining the cancer. In a study, it was stated that one out of four people with genetic inheritance might develop thyroid cancer but three may not. Therefore, this myth may or not be true in all cases.

Thyroid is a good cancer

Some doctors say that thyroid cancer is a good cancer because other cancers are more deadly. This is a myth because thyroid cancer can lead to life-long side effects such as side effects due to loss of thyroid gland. This results in hormone replacement therapy for the entire life. But it is usually found that patients of thyroid cancer have higher survival rate than many other cancers and doctors believe that it is easier to a treat thyroid cancer compared to other cancers.

Age and thyroid cancer


Another common myth in thyroid patients is that there are high chances of thyroid patient to develop thyroid cancer after 50 years of age. However, this is not true as no evidence proves that a person suffering from any thyroid disease will always develop thyroid cancer at a certain age.

But there are cases where thyroid diseases are found to put someone at an increased risk of cancer. Therefore, old people with thyroid problems are recommended with screening to diagnose thyroid cancer at an early stage or to avoid the risk of cancer development.

Benign nodules are supposed to be safe

In some researches, it was found that benign nodules in thyroid gland grow large enough to obstruct the throat and also stimulate the thyroid to over-produce hormones which can lead to thyroid cancer. This is why benign nodules are considered unsafe. Many studies have revealed that benign nodules being safe is a myth.