Thyroid cancer awareness
The Medical Center of Trinity is bringing attention to one of the fastest-growing incidences of cancer during national Thyroid Cancer Awareness Month (September).
The thyroid gland is a butterfly-shaped small gland at the base of the neck that produces hormones to regulate metabolism.
Although symptoms vary, in addition to feeling or seeing a lump in the neck, the five signs of a thyroid condition include fatigue, weight changes, high cholesterol, hair loss, and neck discomfort.
Thyroid nodules are lumps or growths within the thyroid gland, and are more common in women, and increase in prevalence with age.
Not all nodules are cancerous.
During Thyroid Cancer Awareness Month, the medical center encourages women to do neck checks and to make sure it is part of an annual medical exam If a person thinks symptoms are present, a thyroid evaluation with a doctor should be scheduled.
It’s important to make your health a priority.
When life gets busy, sometimes taking the time to schedule an appointment takes a backseat to just about everything else.
AdventHealth offers this list of important preventive screenings for women:
- Annual Well Visit. Women of all ages should make a point to keep their annual well-woman visit, where a primary care provider can screen for a variety of diseases, assess the risk for future problems, discuss lifestyle habits, and make sure vaccinations are up to date.
- Mammogram. Depending on risk factors and family history, annual mammograms likely will start between the ages of 40 and 50. Speak with a primary care provider to determine the screening schedule. Expect to undergo a yearly mammogram until age 75. The test can identify possible early signs of breast cancer.
- Colonoscopy. In most cases, women should undergo regular colonoscopies (once every five to 10 years), starting at age 50 (possibly sooner based on personal risk factors and/or family history). The outpatient procedure, performed under sedation, can identify precancerous polyps or early cancerous cells so they can be removed.
- Dental Exam and Cleaning. Dental exams are recommended for all individuals every six months, with X-rays once per year. Professional dental cleanings remove plaque and bacteria that can lead to tooth and gum disease. The dentist also checks for signs of tongue and mouth cancer. Problems with dental health can be an indication of other health problems, such as osteoporosis.
- Cholesterol Screening. Most women should undergo regular cholesterol screenings starting at the age of 45. Screenings should start at age 20 if the person is a smoker, is obese, or has diabetes, high blood pressure (hypertension) or heart disease. These screenings should be done every five years.
- Pap Test and HPV Test. Most women should undergo an annual pap and HPV test until the age of 65. These tests screen for abnormalities that may indicate pre- or early cervical cancer. Testing positive for HPV can identify women who may be at risk to develop cervical cancer later on in life.
- Skin Exam. Speak wih a primary care provider or dermatologist to determine a screening schedule. Undergoing regular skin exams enables the health care provider to track worrisome moles, lumps or bumps, along with identifying and treating early signs of skin cancer.
AdventHealth encourages women to talk to a trusted health provider about scheduling all necessary screenings.
Leave a Reply
You must be logged in to post a comment.