About the Biopsy

First of all, thank you to everyone for your concern! And since people are concerned, I’d better explain the biopsy.

A few months ago I went to the doctor for my yearly physical, and my doctor found a lump in my thyroid.  She scheduled some blood work and an ultrasound.  My blood work shows my thyroid is working properly, but there’s a thyroid antibody present, which usually means a thyroid autoimmune disease.  The ultrasound showed nodules in my thyroid, one of which, on the right side, was about the size of a ping pong ball.  Autoimmune diseases in the thyroid often cause nodules in the thyroid, and people can get nodules in the thyroid for many other reasons.  However, they have to rule out cancer, and the only way to do that is to do a biopsy.

So, yesterday I went back to the hospital and they performed a biopsy.  It wasn’t really that much different than getting blood drawn, except it was on my neck.  I didn’t watch, since I figured that it would be freaky to see a large needle jabbing at my throat.  The procedure only took a few minutes, and it was guided by ultrasound. I’ll get the results either at the end of this week or at the beginning of next week.

The odds are very much in my favor, since only 5-10% of nodules are ever malignant.  Plus, the doctor who did the biopsy says that the nodule has a very well defined shape.  Most malignant tumors are “fuzzy,” it’s hard to see where they begin or end, so my nodule looks like a benign nodule. Plus, thyroid cancer is incredibly treatable, with a very high success rate.  The doctor called it, “the best kind of cancer you can have.” So, if the tumor is malignant, they would remove my thyroid and I would take a pill every day for the rest of my life to replace they thyroid hormone.  If the tumor is benign, they’ll monitor it by ultrasound every year or so, and they’ll do blood work.  The autoimmune disease means there is a good chance that I’ll develop hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism at some point, though it’s not a guarantee.  But I have a very strong family history of hypothyroidism, so I fully expect to get that at some point.  If and when I do, I’ll take a pill every day for the rest of my life.

So, that’s all I know.  I’ll let you know the results of the biopsy once I get them, and thanks again for the good thoughts!

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