Thursday, June 8, 2023

Starting a New Fight

I’m not sure if I’ve mentioned here before that I had to have thyroid surgery recently? When I was having my PET scans for my Hodgkin’s, they found a hot spot on my thyroid which didn’t change with treatment. I was referred to ENT and after a biopsy came back inconclusive, they decided to operate.

The operation included them removing half of my thyroid gland, and a lovely 3 inch scar on my neck (roughly where a man’s Adam’s apple is). Six weeks after my operation, I got the results.

I had the obligatory chat on the way to the consultation room: “How are you today, Roz?” “OK, I think, I’m hoping YOU can tell ME.”

We walked into the room and there was my surgeon, his registrar, another professor, a nurse, and a nurse counselor. When there are that many people in the room, it’s never good news.

Doc: “We’ve only had your results back today”

Me: “Right. And…”

Doc: “It’s positive”

Me: “Meaning?”

Doc: “It’s malignant”

Me: “S**t”

I was only in the consultation room for about two minutes before I was ushered off into a side room with my “key worker”. He’s the person I go to with any worries, questions or concerns. I was told that the type of cancer is “Well differentiated papillary thyroid cancer” which is apparently the best one to have and also the most common one.

They aren’t worried about it, but I wonder how many of the people in that room had to fight one cancer, let alone two.

In comparison to what I’ve already been through, this will be fairly easy. I have started thyroid hormone replacement tablets (which I keep forgetting to take!). I will need another operation to remove the other half of my thyroid gland, and am on the waiting list for this, it will most likely be towards the end of January, beginning of February, and then I will probably need radioactive iodine treatment.

My key worker told me that if I hadn’t have had my scan to stage my Hodgkin’s, it may have been another 10 or 20 years before I noticed a lump because it’s so slow growing, and even then the prognosis would still be good.

So, who’d have thunk it? Two completely different and unrelated types of cancer before the age of 30. I suppose, I could think myself lucky to have had two cancers with good prognosis, but honestly, I’d have rather had none at all thanks.

Here’s to kicking it once more!

This article is intended to convey general educational information and should not be relied upon as a substitute for professional healthcare advice.

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  1. Dave

    Wow… that’s terrible news, and I hope you beat it. The “good” news, if I can call it that, is that I understand thyroid cancer has a really good survival rate.

    A lot of us young people seem to be having lymph and thyroid problems these days.

  2. Roz

    Thank you. I guess I’m lucky that I’ve had two treatable cancers, rather than one terminal one! I’m having my surgery on Friday to remove the other half x

  3. Teresa Dahl

    There’s strength in numbers- keep fighting!

  4. Jason

    First of all, I hope you are doing well and are on the road to recovery (again). I am dealing with something similar right now. I was treated for NSHL Stage III from Oct ’10-Mar ’11. My post-treatment scans were a success but my thyroid had activity on the PET. My doctor ordered an ultrasound for three months later which I had today. Unfortunately the ultra sound showed calcifation and I will need to undergo a biopsy in the next two weeks. I don’t want to jump to any conclusions too soon, but I am very concerned and it is deja vu all over again. I’ve been scouring the internet all day trying to get more information and stumbled upon your story. Anyways I wish you all the success in your treatments, and will keep you in my thoughts and prayers along with all of those still fighting.

  5. cayci

    Hi, I’m new here. I am wanting to know if HL and Thyroid cancer are related. I know that thyroid cancer can spread to lymph nodes. I have HL and Thyroid cancer, I’m a 28 year old female.

    I found a lump in my neck in May 2011, had a Thyroidectomy on 6/23/11. Thyroid biopsy came back with papillary cancer and the radiation oncologist found the enlarged lymph nodes on my CT. After about a month, and two biopsies later, I was diagnosed with Hodgkins Lymphoma. I’ve had one visit of chemo so far, but after doing this research I’m wondering if the two cancers are related?

    I’d like to see what you guys/girls think:) See you soon, love the club!


  6. Jessica

    First off Hello! Second I am in a similar predicament as a few of you. Noticed goiter first had biopsy which was benign. Had some random chest and back pain (these are just a few of a list of odd symptoms I have had over the past 5-6 yrs) that I went to the ER for, due to the events following the ER visit I found out that I had hodgkins lymphoma. Started ABVD chemo for treatment not too long after that. Needed 6 months. Half way through we did a pet scan…. lymphoma pretty much gone but now my thyroid shows up positive. Had another biopsy, its not cancerous but there are cells that are similar to cancer cells and some that are sort of in between regular cells and cancer cells so they think its best to take my thyroid. I actually just found out the results today. I do not know what the connection is but Im pretty sure there is a connection since I am not the only person having issues with both my lymph nodes and thyroid. BTW I am a 32 yr old female. Good Luck to everyone!

  7. cristy

    do you have cowdens syndrome? thats what i have. they want to take my thyroid after two imconclusive biopsies. i already had a full hysterectomy. im 33. i would love to talk to you via email or whatever. thanks

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