Thyroid cancer - papillary carcinoma - Overview
Papillary carcinoma of the thyroid
Definition of Thyroid cancer - papillary carcinoma:
Papillary carcinoma of the thyroid is the most common cancer of the thyroid gland.
See also: Thyroid cancer
Causes, incidence, and risk factors:
About 80% of all thyroid cancers diagnosed in the United States are papillary carcinoma type. It is more common in women than in men. It may occur in childhood, but is most often seen in adults around the age of 45.
The cause of this cancer is unknown. A genetic defect may be involved.
Radiation increases the risk of developing thyroid cancer. Exposure may occur from:
- High-dose external radiation treatments to the neck, especially during childhood, used to treat childhood cancer or some benign childhood conditions.
- Radiation due to atomic bomb testing in the Marshall Islands and the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear disaster in the Ukraine, mostly in children.
Radiation given through a vein (through an IV) during medical tests and treatments does not increase the risk of developing thyroid cancer.
- Reviewed last on: 3/2/2010
- David C. Dugdale, III, MD, Professor of Medicine, Division of General Medicine, Department of Medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine; Yi-Bin Chen, MD, Leukemia/Bone Marrow Transplant Program, Massachusetts General Hospital. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.
Ladenson P, Kim M. Thyroid. In: Goldman L, Ausiello D, eds. Cecil Medicine. 23rd ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Saunders Elsevier; 2007: chap 244.
National Comprehensive Cancer Network. NCCN Guidelines in Oncology 2010: Thyroid Cancer. Version 1.2010.
The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the
diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be
consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all
medical emergencies. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not
constitute endorsements of those other sites. © 1997-
A.D.A.M., Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is
© 2011 University of Maryland Medical Center (UMMC). All rights reserved.
UMMC is a member of the University of Maryland Medical System,
22 S. Greene Street, Baltimore, MD 21201. TDD: 1-800-735-2258 or 1.866.408.6885