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Using Research to Improve Testing for Thyroid Cancer


Research is identifying ways to improve testing for thyroid cancer and make surgery less likely.

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Detecting thyroid cancer is getting easier, thanks to research. Hi, I’m Dr. Griffin Rodgers with NIH.

Many people have lumps in their neck due to enlargement of the thyroid gland. These lumps are called nodules, and most are not cancerous.

Thirty years ago, to check a thyroid nodule for cancer, surgery was required. Today, thanks to research, in most cases, a needle biopsy can be done right in the doctor’s office to diagnose thyroid cancer. The doctor uses a thin needle and removes a tissue sample from the thyroid nodule.

For some people, a needle biopsy doesn’t give a clear diagnosis, and they will need surgery. Here’s the good news: Through research, we’re looking for new ways to improve testing for thyroid cancer and make surgery even less likely.

For more information, follow us on Twitter @niddkgov. This is Dr. Griffin Rodgers with the NIH.

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