Thyroid Cancer / Nodules & Hyperthyroidism Expert Forum
How large is too large?
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Questions in the Thyroid forum are answered by Mark Lupo, MD. Topics covered include Goiter, Graves Disease, Hyperthyroid, Parathyroid/Calcium Problems, Thyroid Cancer, Thyroid Nodules/Cysts, Thyroiditis, Thyroid & Pregnancy, Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH), Thyroid Tests, and Thyroid Surgery.

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How large is too large?

I had an ultrasound done on my thyroid on 12/31/09 for left solitary nodule measuring 3.6cmx2.2cmx2.0cm. FNAsupported a benign nodule and dr. told me to wait six months and have another ultrasound to see if there was any new growth. In the interim I was diagnosed with breast cancer and am undergoing the end of my treatments now, so needless to say I forgot about my 6 month thyroid scan and it has been a year.  The thyroid seemed to get larger so I spoke to my oncologist who sent me for another ultrasound.  The nodule now measures 6.6cmx2.8cmx2.7cm. My oncologist told me not to worry about it, but of course I am.  How large is too large for a nodule (I do have some difficulty swallowing when I lie down)  Also I am scheduled for my next pet scan next week.  Would thyroid cancer show up it there was any on this scan?  Thank you, Lisa
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That is a significant enlargement and a repeat FNA should be perfomed.
Thyroid cancer does not always show up on PET scan, but if the PET shows increased uptake, it is 40% rate of cancer.
If the nodule has truly grown to 6.6cm from 3.6cm, would consider removal - but first repeat the FNA.
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Thyroid & Endocrine Center of Florida
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