Surgery is usually the first line of treatment for thyroid cancer. Usually the whole thyroid gland (total thyroidectomy) will need to be removed, though sometimes only one lobe has to be removed; it depends on various factors such as your age, the size of the lump and results of the tests. The parathyroid glands may or may not be removed. After a thyroidectomy, patient need to take thyroxine tablets as prescribed for the rest of his/herlife; regular blood tests will be needed to check that patient thyroid hormone levels are within normal limits, and that the TSH level is suppressed. Eventually patient should only need a blood test once or twice a year.
Following surgery patient will need to have his hormone levels monitored
After thyroid surgery, GP will need to monitor patient thyroid medication and geblood tests to check hormone levels. When patient are at home after surgery,patient contact GP or treatment centre if:
- he feel extremely tired
- he have feelings of pins and needles in hands, feet or face
- he have palpitations
- he feel shaky
- he become very overactive, or
- he generally feel very unwell.
This may mean patient need to have thyroxine or calcium levels checked and patient medication dose increased or decreased, as the case may be. Once body has settled patient will be able to lead a normal life but will need to continue to take the thyroxine tablets for the rest of life and to have thyroid levels checked regularly. It will be particularly important to have thyroid hormones (TSH) checked if patient become pregnant, as he may need to increase her dose of thyroxine (levothyroxine). Patient will probably also need to have radioactive iodine treatment Most people need to have radioactive iodine treatment after surgery to destroy any remaining thyroid or cancer cells. Doctor will tell if this is the case. Radioactive iodine treatment is painless – it means taking either one or two capsule-type tablets, or as a liquid, in a single dose. Patient should not feel sick or lose any hair or have any other side effects with the usual dose required. It is a low dose of radiation but, for the safety of others, for the first 2–4 days a person needs to come into hospital and reduce their social contact. If patient need this treatment he will be informed by specialist consultant and given an information booklet before start the treatment.
I. What is it?
The parathyroid glands are small glands in the endocrine system lying near the thyroid gland in the neck area. There are four parathyroid glands that are normally having the size of a single rice grain. In some normal cases, they can be as big as the size of a pea.
The parathyroid gland acts as a controller as it controls calcium levels in the body. This means that this endocrine gland controls how much calcium can be absorbed in the bones and how much calcium are released in the bloodstream. It should be understood that calcium is one important element needed by the body for its function. With this, calcium needs to be regulated carefully and parathyroid gland is responsible for it.
II. How it works?
The parathyroid gland can perform its function, which is regulating the amount of calcium in the body, by secreting one important hormone called the parathyroid hormone in the bloodstream. When the body’s calcium level is low, the parathyroid releases more hormones. On the other hand, when there is a high level of calcium, the parathyroid decreases the amount of hormones to be secreted.
The parathyroid glands are four small, light-colored lumps that protrude from the surface of the thyroid gland. Although the four parathyroid glands are small, they have a very rich blood supply. The parathyroid glands are at risk also for being accidentally removed during thyroidectomy since they are located just behind the thyroid gland. The parathyroid gland secretes parathyroid hormones, which are produced by chief cells. The chief cells are arranged and seen as tightly packed nests around small blood vessels. Parathyroid hormones are the ones responsible of the regulation of calcium and phosphorus in the body. The parathyroid glands are said to be butterfly-shaped and is found in the neck. The parathyroid gland may be seen on both sides of the windpipe. The four parathyroid glands are situated on both sides of the neck; two glands per side. Parathyroid hormones or PTH secreted by the parathyroid gland is also known as a polypeptide that consists 84 amino acids. Hormones are referred to as chemical messengers of the body.
Parathyroid hormones are considered to be the most important endocrine regulator. It basically regulates the calcium and phosphorus concentration in the body. These hormones are secreted from the cells of the parathyroid gland. The parathyroid gland is the small endocrine glands found in an individual’s neck just behind the thyroid gland. Parathyroid hormones also have major effects on development. The body needs just enough parathyroid hormones. If one’s parathyroid glands do not produce or secrete enough parathyroid hormones, this may cause one’s calcium level to drop. If one’s calcium level in the body drops, one may suffer from hypothyroidism. Hypothyroidism happens when the thyroid glands fail to produce enough thyroid hormones. One’s parathyroid hormone level can be checked through a parathyroid hormone test. The parathyroid hormone test is done to identify if an individual is suffering from hypothyroidism. Parathyroid hormone tests may also help in finding the cause why an individual’s calcium level is abnormal. It may also help physicians to check if the parathyroid glands are the ones causing the abnormal calcium level. It may be considered as well to determine if an individual has chronic kidney problems.
Parathyroid adenoma is a small tumor of the parathyroid gland and is known to be the most common disorder of the gland. Parathyroid adenomas are benign therefore it is not malignant. The parathyroid gland increases in size and it tends to produce excess parathyroid hormones. This is also known as primary hyperparathyroidism. Patients are not aware of the tumors in most cases. Tumors are only found when patient’s routine blood test results show elevated blood calcium and parathyroid hormone levels. In serious cases, kidney stones can form as the bone density diminishes. The parathyroid glands in the neck are responsible for controlling calcium use and removal in the body. The parathyroid glands do this by producing parathyroid hormones or PTH. PTH helps in controlling calcium, vitamin D and phosphorus levels within in the blood and bone. Parathyroid adenomas may also be due to genetic problems. If there is a family history of someone having a parathyroid adenoma, it is more likely for the present and upcoming generations to suffer from the same condition. Every effort must be made to treat these conditions prior to having a patient undergo a surgery.