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NCCN Guidelines for Patients



Thyroid Cancer, Version 1.2017


Treatment guide

Medullary thyroid cancer

If you have an inherited form of medullary thyroid

cancer, your doctor will consider surgery with

possible neck dissection, radiation therapy, and

levothyroxine for primary treatment.

See Guide


Before treatment, your doctor will measure

calcitonin, CEA, and calcium with or without a PTH

test. He or she will check for pheochromocytoma

(tumor in the adrenal gland that is usually benign).

You may also have an ultrasound of the neck.

If you have hyperparathyroidism, your doctor

will explore the parathyroid glands for disease.

Hyperparathyroidism means one or more of these

glands are making too much parathyroid hormone.

Thus, your doctor will consider removing one or more

of the parathyroid glands.

He or she can leave a certain amount of tissue in

place and remove the glands that are not good or

autotransplant tissue from a parathyroid gland into

an area like your forearm. It would take some time

to adjust but the parathyroid tissue would eventually

begin to make hormones again. Tissue can also

be frozen to preserve tissue (cryopreservation)

and stored outside the body. The goal is to put

it back into your body at a later time. If you have

pheochromocytoma, that would be treated first,

before the thyroid cancer.