Welcome back, Radioactive Iodine has been used successfully as a
therapy for Thyroid disease for more than 50 years. Today, a
treatment OPTION AIMED AT improving patient outcomes in
Thyroid Cancer. Take a look. The
minute I heard the word cancer, I immediately went to death
sentence. They found out I had
something weird in my neck. I
got this bad news that I have cancer and I have to think about
my life now. To tell a patient
that they have cancer is always very, very difficult. But it’s
also an opportunity to look at helping someone through what may
be a very trying and stressful time for that patient. The
first thing that flashed through my mind was I’m not going to see
my son grow up. The hardest
part was stopping everything, stopping my life. I was involved
in my school, and someone told you “no” it’s over, you just
have to press pause. “Why?” The
chance of being diagnosed with thyroid cancer has risen in
recent years and is the most rapidly increasing cancer in the
UNITED STATES with numbers almost tripling in the past
three decades. Although surgery
remains the current standard of care, statistics are showing
that with the addition of Radioactive Iodine therapy,
Physicians can significantly improve outcomes and joining us
today is Dr. Douglas Van Nostrand, director of Nuclear
Medicine at MedStar Washington Hospital Center, doctor thank
you so much for joining us today. Alright, let’s get right
into it; can you describe thyroid cancer for us? There’s
really four types of thyroid cancers, and they are based upon
the types of cells that are found within the thyroid. And
they are what call well differentiated thyroid cancers
and that’s papillary and follicular and there’s really
rare cancers called medullary and anaplastic. The predominant
ones that we experience are papillary and follicular cell
thyroid cancers. So doctor,
how are we currently treating thyroid cancer? There’s three
core components that are considered for the treatment of
thyroid cancer, well differentiated thyroid cancer. Surgical removal, a radioiodine
therapy, and administration of thyroid hormones. Now in regard
to the surgery, the goal of the surgery is hopefully to cure
that thyroid cancer by removing it completely, and then based
upon the specific situation of each patient, radioiodine may be
administered because there may be the possibility that the
thyroid cancer cells are left behind and the radioiodine will
then go to those thyroid cancer cells and kill those thyroid
cancer cells. Helping again to
minimize the likelihood that there would be any recurrence
later on, and achieve a cure for that patient. Now the
interesting thing about radioiodine is that those
thyroid cells and the thyroid cancer cells have a unique
ability to want to take up that iodine because they need the
iodine in order to make thyroid hormone. So we’re taking
advantage of that by helping if you will, a magic bullet that is
radioactive that will then be specifically taken up by those
thyroid cells, cancer cells and then when they’re in that
particular cell or irradiate that cell and kill it. Amazing, so doctor how is
radioactive iodine administered? Because I think I speak for a
lot of us who they hear radiation or radioactive and
they’re concerned. Well the
radioactive iodine is put inside of a capsule and then the
capsule is taken by the patient orally, it goes down through the
stomach and the intestines and then it’s absorbed through the
blood supply. But the beauty of
this treatment, is that the radioiodine that’s not taken up
by those thyroid cancer cells, is relatively, rapidly
eliminated from the body and it’s eliminated through the
urine, through the kidneys, and through the G.I. track, now one
concern that comes up that you raised earlier is about
radiation and radioactivity and when anybody talks about
radiation and radioactivity the first thing they say is, well
this is cancer, this is going to cause cancer. And it’s a concern
but, generally speaking when one looks at the side effects of
radioiodine from the first or second treatment, the increase
risk of any type of other cancer is very, very low. Doctor,
what are the benefits of radioactive iodine and are there
any side effects? There’s really
three potential benefits for the patient. The first it can aid
the physician who’s going to follow this patient in order to
look for recurrence of thyroid cancer, the second it reduces
the likelihood of recurrence in patients by receiving the
radioactive iodine one reduces recurrence rate, and the third
is in patients who have had recurrence rate, it can extend
life. Now radioiodine like any
treatment has side effects. The
treatment of radioactive iodine, patients can have some nausea,
and occasionally there is vomiting, one can get swelling
and pain in their salivary glands. The salivary glands
accumulate the iodine, like the thyroid does, but with
preventative medicines one can help reduce the likelihood and
the severity of that and there’s a lot of things that we can do
with that; however, most people tolerate the radioiodine fairly
well. That sounds like it can be
a great option for many people. Let’s check in with our
patients. The reaction that I
had to the radioactive iodine was very minimal, so there is no
hair loss or anything like that, the side effects I immediately
felt, I was a little nauseous. One of the biggest fears I faced
after getting over the initial fear of, of having cancer was
will the radioactive iodine inhibit my ability to have
another child. I was very
blessed to have another son, five years ago. Having cancer,
for me it brings me a totally different ways of approaching
life. Because I’m more alive
than ever. That was so nice to
see, so doctor what educational resources are available for
families and patients? Well I’m
really pleased that you asked that question because that’s a
very important issue for me and there’s many resources that are
available. They include many
patient books, many thyroid cancer support groups that are
online and a new one that I’m excited about is called “Time”
and the time stands for, thyroidectomy surgery, iodine,
the radioiodine therapy, monitoring and expectations and
this is I think a really good program to help organize the
patient to be their own advocate. But also to have a
frame work in order to work with a physician regarding what’s the
appropriate care for their particular thyroid cancer. Doctor, thank you so much for
coming here today, all this great information, helping
keeping our viewers informed.Combination therapies
in treatment, including Radioactive Iodine, are a
powerful opponent in the battle against certain types of Thyroid
Cancer. Ask your Doctor if it
may be right for you! For more
information on Radioactive Iodine Therapy please
visit draximage DOT COM BACK SLASH TIME and of course you can
go to our website ACCESS HEALTH DOT TV. Don’t forget to
follow us on Facebook and Twitter. (music.)

16 thoughts on “Radioactive Iodine Therapy to Treat Thyroid Cancer”

  1. According to present situation we must need to know about thyroid cancer. Its a very good video. We all have must know about the symptoms as well as treatments for thyroid cancer.

  2. cancers are difficult??? really? because you people are either dumb-ass, or fucking liars to boost you fucking BIG PHARMA business.

    just take iodine supplement for cancers!

  3. Thuroid Cancer is on the Rise and so is GMO in our food! Both have sometging to do with Hormones. Brought to you by Monsanto your friendly neighborhood Pesticide/Food and PHARMA Distributer! Makes Sense to me, get them sick so you can milk the Insurance Companies, your assets and most IMPORTANTLY YOUR QUALITY OF LIFE!!! Or LIFE in General!!!

  4. I recently found out I have thyroid cancer and it has spread to my lymph vessels. I still can’t wrap my head around this mess at only 31!

  5. hello sister when i am accept radioactive iodine then after 4 month my wife concept baby.now any problem my baby………please. …i am bangladeshi

  6. I had a TT 5/1 5/9 Result PTC Started LID 5/30 RAI Treatment 6/29…..I have heart trouble, st 2 kidney disease, pancreatitis, 2 autoimmune diseases, or glaucoma left eye. Sjogrens is one of the autoimmune diseases. I'm scared of what the radiation will do because of my illnesses. Does it bother saliva glands, kidneys etc?

  7. I’m only 10 years old and my family thinks I have what do I do could I die what about my friends my mom my dad my sister my life just what do I do

  8. This treatment is absolutely stupid if you have autoimmune disesse. Cancer yeah it can make sense. Autoimmunity its upsurd. Heal your gut, lower your cortisol, autoimmune will fade into remission.

  9. Let us be grateful to Dr Saul Hertz who conceived of the medical uses of radioactive iodine (RAI) and brought the RAI treatment from bench to bedside. Dr Hertz overcame many challenges to bring his lifesaving work to fruition. Here is a short video from an Aspen Institute Meeting where Katie Couric is interviewing Dr Siddhartha Mukherjee, Pulitzer Prize winner for An Emperor of All Maladies…..


    Saul Hertz's legacy is profound and enduring… the first and Gold Standard of targeted therapy……with the beauty of the approach being that it maintains healthy cells, increases the effectiveness of treatment, decreases the side effects and health is regained.

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