Thyroid Nodules...

Posted By
5/11/2011 2:53pm
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Replies: 14

Hi all. I went for my latest CT/MRI scans...everything is clear except the new development of a thyroid nodule. My oncologist said he was concerned, that we need to do an ultrasound, but that most thyroid nodules are benign. Should I worry? (Of course I am going to regardless...but....) Has anyone else had an issue? I am still set to begin the ipi trial at Memorial Sloan Kettering on the 20th, so he must not be *that* concerned...right?


"The odds are that the...the odds mean crap. So people should face it, and they should fight." ~Grey's Anatomy.

Janner - (5/11/2011 - 2:56pm)

Most thyroid nodules are benign, and even if it were cancerous, it would more likely be thyroid cancer than melanoma.  Thyroid cancer is usually quite curable and actually quite common relatively speaking.  Hopefully, this is just one of those benign issues that give you a blip on the anxiety scale, but are really nothing to worry about!

Best wishes,


CLPrice31 - (5/11/2011 - 3:04pm)

Thank you! I automatically started googling after the phone call with my oncologist. I felt a little more relaxed until people started asking if the thyroid issue could be related to the melanoma. I figured I would check into it with other people who have more experience than I do! I appreciate the quick response! :-)

"The odds are that the...the odds mean crap. So people should face it, and they should fight." ~Grey's Anatomy.

shellebrownies - (5/11/2011 - 3:05pm)

Not sure if this helps or not, but...

My husband had a PET scan on April 6th that showed some sort of growth near his thyroid on the left side of his neck. There was also some uptake of the radioactive glucose in that area, so they weren't sure if it was cancer or not (or if he was just fighting off a sore throat or something).

He had a repeat scan done on the 29th, and they reported the presence of a nodule on his thyroid, but that it was not cancerous. Other than the fact that I read it on Don's PET scan report, it wasn't even mentioned to us at his appointment. He is undergoing tests to see if he is BRAF positive for the BRAF/MEK trial or the IPI/GM-CSF trial if he's negative. Surely his doctors would not be continuing with the testing if the nodule was going to keep him out of treatment trials; they would just go ahead and start him on Yervoy.

So, I don't know if our case is "normal"... but hubby's got one, and his oncos aren't sweating it. Hopefully your doctor is just being thorough (it seems to me that if cancer doctors are anything, it's that they are thorough! :) ).

Best of luck with your ultrasound and ipi trial. Our next appointment with the oncos is also on the 20th, so hopefully Don won't be that far behind you on the treatment ladder. :)

Michelle, wife of Don, Stage IV

Gonna stand my ground, won't get turned around,
And I'll keep this world from draggin' me down;
Gonna stand my ground and I won't back down.
~Tom Petty

CLPrice31 - (5/11/2011 - 3:13pm)


Thank you for sharing your story with me! It makes me relax when I hear people have had similiar situations. I feel certain the doctors would jump if they really were concerned...I absolutely agree with you that oncologists are definitely thorough! I would not want them any other way! Please let me know how Don's appointment goes!

"The odds are that the...the odds mean crap. So people should face it, and they should fight." ~Grey's Anatomy.

lhaley - (5/11/2011 - 3:16pm)

While rare it does happen. They have biopsied mine twice and both times came up with hashimoto's disease. The last time it had doubled in size in 3 months!  The next time is had shrunk.  Don't be shocked if they biopsy. I wouldn't see why it would stop the trial if it is mel, but think positive that all is ok!!


CLPrice31 - (5/11/2011 - 3:20pm)

Linda, this may be a stupid question but how do they biopsy it? I have been cut on quite a bit in the last 4 months...I want the knives to stay FAR AWAY!

"The odds are that the...the odds mean crap. So people should face it, and they should fight." ~Grey's Anatomy.

lhaley - (5/11/2011 - 3:34pm)

This is done outpatient and only takes minutes - it does sting though. They do an ultrasound and stick a fine needle in it and draw out cells.  They will do this a few times to make sure they got a good sampling. You will have a sore throat for a few days but tylenol works.  The first time I didn't know what to expect and didn't insist that they numb the area. The second time I was smart and insisted. They numbed it and while it still pinched it wasn't impossible (I'm a woss!). You also could ask for some valium if you feel the need. 

No knives and no scars!


CLPrice31 - (5/11/2011 - 4:40pm)

Linda, no knives & no scars? You made my day. :-) My poor neck already shows enough evidence of melanoma! I will insist on them numbing me!!! Thank you!

"The odds are that the...the odds mean crap. So people should face it, and they should fight." ~Grey's Anatomy.

KellieSue - (5/11/2011 - 3:45pm)

Most nodules are benign.

That being said I had a suspicious spot on thyroid show up last year, after slightly changing on subsequent scans I had a biopsy. Mine did turn out to be melanoma, I know highly unlikely but my disease has always done weird things.

It was in my thyroid and lymph nodes surrounding.

I hope your's is nothing and it's highly likely that it is benign!

Kellie(from Iowa) Stage IV, on B-RAF

Cancer Sucks. I'm so not done kicking cancers ass!
I have a lot of life left to live

CLPrice31 - (5/11/2011 - 4:43pm)

Kellie, I just read your signature...You have been through A LOT in the last 2 1/2 years. WOW! Keep doing with you're doing. :-) My cancer has been a bit odd too...Any time I am told it is "highly unlikely" that there is cancer, there has been. So, I am ready to find out some answers! I will continue with my positive thoughts that it is nothing! Best wishes to you.

"The odds are that the...the odds mean crap. So people should face it, and they should fight." ~Grey's Anatomy.

akls - (5/11/2011 - 5:12pm)

I developed two thyroid nodules that were found in February.  My thyroid blood work came back hypo so I felt my neck and sure enough one side was bigger.  They did a scan that showed 2 cold nodules.  They followed up with an ultrasound.  I then I insisted on going to U of Mich. to have my biopsy because that's where all my mel. records are.  They had the pathologists right in the room and after 5 pokes with the needle they finally got enough cells for a good read.  They were able to tell me the day of the biopsy that it wasn't mel.  They called two days later with the news that they are benign.  I have to go in 4 mos. and have another ultrasound to see if they are growing.  I did a year of interferon and they said that definately could have contributed to my thyroid issues. 

They told me at U of M that if it had been mel. they would have been shocked.  They just don't see it go to the thyroid.


Amy S. in Michigan

Stage IIIA 6  years NED Completed 1 year interferon 2009.  God is Good.

lhaley - (5/11/2011 - 5:47pm)

I just wanted to add that I now go to an endocronologist  every 6 months to be looked at with an ultrasound. So far my numbers have been good! Mine was not caused by interfuron because I was never on it!  For me it was discovered at my first PET scan and then further looked into because I was going for a trial..  I was told that it is common to have an enlarged thyroid and to be nothing.


Kimmer - (5/12/2011 - 9:02am)

Let me chime in here too!  A thyroid nodule is the only thing that has ever shown up on my scans; always said ' almost certainly not related to the melanoma diagnosis'.   It got lots of ultrasounds but never worried any of the docs until I got around to Moffitt in Tampa.  I think they worry about everything!  The little nodger got a couple different kinds of US...doppler and some other kind.  Then it got an US guided needle biopsy...didn't even ask...they numbed  the area.  The doc went in 9 it wasn't great, but I have been thru worse. 

Nothing.  Nada.  Just a barnacle.  And a giant bruise on my neck.

These things are pretty common, from what I understand.

I wish I could take all the worry away for all of is really the worst part.

Good luck with your trial!

Take good care, k.

And remember, no matter where you go, there you are. Confucius

CLPrice31 - (5/16/2011 - 9:09pm)

Thank you so much for sharing your experience. I can't believe they did not warn you before doing the biopsy! WOW! Talk about a surprise...My poor neck looks rough enough. I am hoping the ultrasound will give them what they need to know.


Thanks to everyone for responding. It brought me comfort!

"The odds are that the...the odds mean crap. So people should face it, and they should fight." ~Grey's Anatomy.