South Korea started a similar campaign around 15 years ago encouraging thyroid cancer screening. The rates of diagnosis of thyroid cancer skyrocketed, but mortality rates were not reduced at all.
What does this mean? Ultimately, people are undergoing thyroid surgery and sometimes being placed on lifelong medications when they didn’t have to. Additional screening had no effect in reducing mortality rates.
Bottom line: Unless you show symptoms of thyroid cancer, you don’t need to be screened for it.
Symptoms of thyroid cancer can include:
- swelling and/or pain of the neck
- difficulty swallowing
- change in your voice
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