Medullary Thyroid Cancer

Medullary Thyroid Cancer is the third most common form of thyroid cancer, making up 1-2% of thyroid cancers. It arises from special cells in the thyroid gland that secrete a hormone called calcitonin, which helps with calcium regulation.  About 20% of the time, this cancer is inherited but the remainder of the time it happens sporadically, with no family predisposition. Medullary thyroid cancer is most commonly diagnosed by a needle biopsy, and the first-line treatment is surgical removal of the thyroid gland and lymph nodes adjacent to the gland.  Follow up office visits, imaging, and blood tests are used to monitor for any signs of persistent or recurrent cancer in the years following treatment