Purpose of This Summary
This PDQ cancer information summary for health professionals provides comprehensive, peer-reviewed, evidence-based information about the treatment of childhood liver cancer. It is intended as a resource to inform and assist clinicians who care for cancer patients. It does not provide formal guidelines or recommendations for making health care decisions.
Reviewers and Updates
This summary is reviewed regularly and updated as necessary by the PDQ Pediatric Treatment...
Thyroid lobectomy removes only one part (lobe) of the thyroid
gland. This surgery is an option if your cancer is small and is only in one
lobe of your thyroid gland.
Near-total thyroidectomy removes all but a very small part of the thyroid gland. This is done in special cases with smaller tumors or if an experienced surgeon is not available.
Total thyroidectomy removes
the entire thyroid gland. This is the most common type of surgery, because most
people have cancer in both parts (lobes) of the thyroid gland. This type of
surgery provides the highest rates of cure and also makes radioactive iodine
treatment and thyroid hormone therapy work better.
During surgery, lymph nodes in the neck may also be
removed and tested for cancer cells (lymphadenectomy). If thyroid cancer has spread to the lymph
radioactive iodine will be used to destroy the
remaining cancer cells.
Most thyroid cancers grow and
spread so slowly that you can delay surgery for a short time if you need to. If
you choose to postpone surgery, your thyroid cancer should be watched closely
Surgery to remove only
the part of the thyroid gland that contains cancer (lobectomy) is less
complicated than total thyroidectomy and less likely to lead to hypothyroidism.
But thyroid cancer comes back (recurs) after lobectomy more often than it does
after total thyroidectomy.
If you and your doctor decide that you need surgery, it is important to have the procedure done by a highly skilled surgeon at a hospital that has a good success rate. There are fewer problems from surgery when a person has a skilled and experienced surgeon.2