What is thyroid cancer?
Thyroid cancer is a form of cancer that develops from the tissues of the thyroid gland. The thyroid gland is located in the front of the throat, below the thyroid cartilage (also known as the Adam’s apple).
The thyroid gland produces several important hormones, including the thyroid hormone, which is involved in controlling body temperature, weight, energy level and heart rate. The thyroid gland also produces calcitonin, which helps the body use calcium.
Thyroid cancer incidence
The American Cancer Society estimates that 56,870 people in the United States will be diagnosed with thyroid cancer in 2017. Compared with other common types of cancer, thyroid cancer occurs more frequently in younger patients with about 65 percent of cases occurring in people under the age of 55. Women are also approximately three times more likely to develop thyroid cancer than men.