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07.08.2018 | Original Paper

Neck Ultrasound in Patients with Follicular Thyroid Carcinoma

Zeitschrift:
Hormones and Cancer
Autoren:
Konstantinos Segkos, Kyle Porter, Leigha Senter, Matthew D. Ringel, Fadi A. Nabhan

Abstract

There are limited data on the role of neck ultrasound (US) in the surveillance of patients with follicular thyroid cancer (FTC). Here, we analyze the likelihood of US to find structural disease in patients with FTC and evaluate if initial American Thyroid Association (ATA) risk stratification and the response to therapy categories [the latter based on thyroglobulin (Tg) levels] modify that likelihood. We conducted a retrospective cohort study of 32 patients with FTC in our institution. We included all patients with well-differentiated FTC who underwent total thyroidectomy and radioactive iodine (RAI) treatment without neck structural disease at the time of RAI and with Tg and US at least 6 months after RAI. After a median follow-up of 4.3 years, two patients (6.3%) had structural disease by US. None of the 18 patients with initial ATA low-risk disease had structural disease by US in contrast to higher, but not significant, frequency of 18.2% (2/11) in patients with initial ATA high-risk disease (p = 0.14). Based on Tg levels, 24/32 patients had excellent response to therapy and 8/32 had biochemical incomplete/indeterminate response. None of the patients with excellent response had structural disease by US versus 2/8 (25%) patients with biochemical incomplete/indeterminate response all of whom had other sites of structural disease (p = 0.054). Our findings suggest that neck US in FTC is unlikely to find structural disease with initial low-risk ATA or excellent response to therapy but can detect structural disease in some patients with initial ATA high-risk or incomplete/indeterminate responses to therapy.

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