PREVIOUS QUESTION:

 

NEXT QUESTION:

 

What is radioactive iodine (RAI) ablation for papillary thyroid carcinoma?

ANSWER

Surgery alone may cure the cancer, so not everyone needs this step. After the operation, your thyroid gets tested. The results will help you and your doctor decide if you might need RAI ablation to keep cancer from returning.

This is typically a one-time treatment where you take a pill with radioactive iodine. Any leftover thyroid cells take in the iodine, which then kills them. It doesn't usually have side effects, since only thyroid cells soak it up.

From: What Is Papillary Thyroid Carcinoma? WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES:

Columbia Thyroid Center: "Papillary Thyroid Cancer," "Thyroid Biopsy Clinic."

NIH, National Cancer Institute: "Thyroid Cancer Treatment (PDQ®)-Patient Version."

Mayo Clinic: "Thyroid Cancer."

The American Association of Endocrine Surgeons: "Thyroid cancer: Papillary Thyroid Cancer (PTC)."

Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center: "Thyroid Cancer."

National Health Service: "Thyroid Cancer."

Medscape: "Papillary Thyroid Carcinoma."

American Cancer Society: "Treatment of Thyroid Cancer, by Type and Stage."

Reviewed by Laura J. Martin on October 30, 2017

SOURCES:

Columbia Thyroid Center: "Papillary Thyroid Cancer," "Thyroid Biopsy Clinic."

NIH, National Cancer Institute: "Thyroid Cancer Treatment (PDQ®)-Patient Version."

Mayo Clinic: "Thyroid Cancer."

The American Association of Endocrine Surgeons: "Thyroid cancer: Papillary Thyroid Cancer (PTC)."

Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center: "Thyroid Cancer."

National Health Service: "Thyroid Cancer."

Medscape: "Papillary Thyroid Carcinoma."

American Cancer Society: "Treatment of Thyroid Cancer, by Type and Stage."

Reviewed by Laura J. Martin on October 30, 2017

NEXT QUESTION:

Who might need radioactive iodine (RAI) ablation for papillary thyroid carcinoma?

WAS THIS ANSWER HELPFUL

THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to make decisions about your health. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the WebMD Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.

    This tool does not provide medical advice. See additional information.