Thyroid Cancer

Cancers arising from the thyroid gland are the eighth most common cancer diagnosed in adolescents and the second most common among girls. Approximately 60 children are diagnosed with thyroid cancer each year in the state of Texas. Cancer of the thyroid gland often presents as a swelling in the front of the neck. Sometimes, patients can present with difficulty swallowing or enlargement of lymph glands in the neck.

Children who received radiation therapy to the neck as part of the treatment for cancers such as medulloblastoma and Hodgkin lymphoma are at increased risk of developing thyroid cancer. Children with Hashimoto thyroiditis or genetic syndromes such as Gardner's syndrome, MEN 2A or 2B are also at increased risk.

Types of thyroid cancers in children

  • Papillary thyroid cancer
  • Follicular thyroid cancer
  • Medullary thyroid cancer

Research

At Texas Children’s Cancer and Hematology Centers, we  are interested in understanding the biology of thyroid cancer with the goal of offering more successful therapies for pediatric patients  We have established the North American Pediatric Thyroid Cancer registry to collect information on children with thyroid cancers. Email us at raretumors@txch.org to get information on how to enroll in the registry.

We are the first and only center in North America to open a clinical trial of lenvatinib in children. Lenvatinib is approved for use in adults with differentiated thyroid cancer. We are currently testing the safety of this medication in children, and plan to test the effectiveness of this medication in children with thyroid cancers. More information on this clinical trial can be obtained by emailing raretumors@txch.org or by visiting clinicaltrials.gov.