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Painless swelling in thyroid gland and formation as a nodule may be cancer with 5 % possibility. In the meantime, functioning of thyroid is usually normal. 80-85% of cancers in thyroid gland are generally papillary and follicular cancers (differentiated, generally benign). Familial transition can be seen in medullary type cancer that is less commonly encountered. Anaplastic cancer progresses very quickly. Cancers in other areas of the body can metastasize to thyroid gland.

Most of the patients do not have significant complaints. During examination, a nodule generally in the form of a bump is found in thyroid gland. Patients or their relatives may notice this as well. Nodule or nodules may be seen in thyroid gland because of investigation for other purposes with a method such as neck ultrasonography, computerized tomography, magnetic resonance. Nodules with diameter less than 1 cm, incidentally noticed by imaging methods and not detected with manual examination are commonly encountered. Most of them are not cancer. In these cases, endocrinology and metabolic diseases specialist should be consulted.

There are some risk factors whose efficiency has been determined in formation of thyroid cancer. These factors are;
Administering radiation treatment to head-neck in especially childhood period (Radiotherapy) or being exposed to common ionizing radiation (nuclear accident, atomic bomb)

Genetic predisposition. Detecting thyroid cancer in medullary type in relatives such as especially mother, father, siblings
Possibility of nodular structures being cancer in men in childhood period is a bit more likely when compared with adults and women. 
Early diagnosis and treatment of all thyroid cancer is very essential and important. The most important part of treatment is surgery intervention. If necessary, radioactive iodine treatment is administered and tissue and cancer cells with a possibility of being remained after surgery are destroyed. In this way, patients have no cancer cells as well as thyroid gland; in other words, patient has become hypothyroid. This patient should receive adequate doses of thyroid hormone for a lifetime. Since vast majority of thyroid cancers is accepted to have been affected from Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH), dose of thyroid hormone to be administered is kept high in a way that TSH will be suppressed. Patient is monitored by a specialist in endocrinology and metabolic diseases with semi-annual at first and then annual periods. 85 % of papillary and follicular (differentiated) thyroid cancer patients comprising 80-85 % group gains a complete recovery and they continue their normal lives.  Relapses and exacerbations may be seen in 10-15 % of these patients; in this case, required treatments are performed.