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Is There a Hidden Link Between Thyroid Cancer and Breast Cancer?

By    |   Tuesday, 22 March 2016 02:30 PM

Recent research suggests an unexpected and reciprocal link between thyroid cancer and breast cancer that has not yet been fully explained.

Breastcancer.org summarized the findings of a large study involving retroactive investigation into the health histories of more than 30,000 women and men. The researchers found that those patients who had been previously treated and survived thyroid cancer had a slightly higher risk of developing another cancer, unrelated to the thyroid, within the first 10 years. After 10 years, the risk was not higher. In women, this second cancer could be breast cancer, and in men, it could be prostate cancer.

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The relationship between breast cancer and thyroid cancer is reciprocal, according to HealthDay News. Another large study examined government records for more than 700,000 women who had been treated for breast cancer. The researchers concluded that, within the first five years of breast cancer diagnosis, women had a higher-than-average risk of also developing thyroid cancer.

The reason why breast cancer survivors are more likely to develop thyroid cancer is not clear. Some medical professionals believe the radiation used to treat breast cancer could affect the thyroid gland, says HealthDay News.

Since radiation treatments have advanced significantly over the years, it is not known whether this relationship would exist when studying only the modern radiation treatments used today. More research is needed is needed and planned in this area.

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In addition, a researcher at Columbia University Medical Center in New York City says she plans to study the affects of the popular breast cancer drug tamoxifen contributes to a higher risk of thyroid cancer.

Dr. Raymond H. Grogan of the Endocrine Surgery Research Program at the University of Chicago also suggests in a Medical News Today article that genetic factors and disorders may play a role in patients developing both cancers. For example, Cowden syndrome seems to increase the risk of both thyroid cancer and breast cancer.

Patients and physicians both need to be aware of the link between breast and thyroid cancer and take steps to monitor health closely.

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Recent research suggests an unexpected and reciprocal link between thyroid cancer and breast cancer that has not yet been fully explained.
thyroid cancer, breast cancer, hidden, link
Tuesday, 22 March 2016 02:30 PM
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