A new study published in JAMA, one of the most respected international medical journals, showed that the incidence of thyroid cancer has increased by 185% worldwide. Turkey is included in the study, which includes 195 countries. Another important result of the study is that while death rates due to thyroid cancer are increasing in the world, this rate is decreasing in Turkey.
Thyroid cancer was discussed in JAMA, one of the most respected medical journals in the world, published by the American Medical Association. Turkey is included in this study, which was conducted on 195 countries and included striking results. Evaluating the results of the study, Endocrine Surgery Specialist Prof. Dr. Erhan Ayşan emphasized that they rarely see such extensive studies in the literature.
“DEAD RATES ARE DECLINEING IN TURKEY”
Yeditepe University, Department of Endocrine Surgery, Prof. Dr. Erhan Ayşan said, “The incidence of thyroid cancer has increased by 185% worldwide and this is an alarming value. However, there is an increase in the death rate due to the disease. There are even countries where this rate of increase has reached 80%. When we look at Turkey, unfortunately, there is an increase in thyroid cancer cases in our country. The good news is that death rates do not parallel the world. While death rates are increasing in the USA, China and India, they are decreasing in Turkey. This is an important point. When we delve deeper into the subject, we see that there is an awareness of thyroid diseases and goiter in Turkey.” made its assessment.
“THE MOST IMPORTANT GENETIC FACTORS IN THYROID CANCER”
Underlining that thyroid cancer and goiter are common in Turkey, especially in the Black Sea and Eastern Anatolia regions, Prof. Dr. Erhan Ayşan said, “There is an awareness about this, so that when our people have doubts about thyroid and goiter, they can go to the doctor immediately. This is an important advantage for our country. As noted in the study, we see that genetic factors are a very important factor for thyroid diseases and thyroid cancer. We know that when thyroid cancer or goiter is detected even in one person in the family, other family members are at an increased risk. The second important factor for thyroid cancer is radiation exposure. Environmental factors and smoking are also among the factors that increase the risk of thyroid cancer.
“LIMITED WHAT CAN BE DONE IN CASE OF DELAYED DIAGNOSIS”
Stating that the disease increases in people with both high and low socioeconomic levels, Prof. Dr. Erhan Ayşan continued his words as follows: “Deaths are higher in people with low socioeconomic status. It has been shown that the most important reason for this situation is to apply to the doctor late. People with high socioeconomic status, on the other hand, apply to physicians, even endocrine doctors who are experts in the subject, and thus, they can receive the treatment of the disease at very early stages. Thus, mortality rates are lower in people in this group. Unfortunately, this cannot be achieved in low socioeconomic groups, and deaths are more common due to late diagnosis and late treatment. As a matter of fact, while the gross national product per capita is extremely low in Ethiopia, the country with the highest number of deaths due to thyroid cancer in the world, the death rates are the lowest in Qatar, which is one of the countries where this value is highest. It should be noted that thyroid cancer is one of the rare cancers that can be completely cured if detected early.”
ATTENTION TO THESE TO CATCH CANCER IN EARLY STAGES!
Stating that an important feature of thyroid cancer is the absence of symptoms, Prof. Dr. Erhan Ayşan made striking statements on the subject: “This is one of the important factors in the late diagnosis of the disease. Our people should pay maximum attention to the following points: First of all, is there a family history of thyroid cancer? We will ask this to our elders. If there is even such a person in the family, they should definitely consult an endocrinologist and have a thyroid ultrasound done. One of the mistakes made at this stage is that when the patient consults a doctor, only blood tests are done and ultrasound is not done. When the blood test is normal, it says 'I don't have anything'. This is very false! Thyroid cancer does not show signs of blood. Therefore, every patient must have an ultrasound. Ultrasound is an extremely simple, inexpensive, radiation-free imaging technique. The risk of thyroid cancer increases with age. Therefore, our recommendation is to perform a thyroid ultrasound once a year after the age of 40. Every patient diagnosed with thyroid cancer should have surgery. The person receiving this diagnosis should immediately go to an endocrine surgeon. One hundred percent success can be achieved with a correctly performed surgery.”
Finally, Yeditepe University Hospitals Endocrine Surgery Specialist, who also draws attention to the food factor in the emergence of various thyroid diseases. Dr. Erhan Ayşan said, “The Black Sea is the region where black cabbage is produced and consumed the most in our country. Unfortunately, kale retains iodine in the body. Since the thyroid gland cannot use the retained iodine, the gland enlarges, so a goiter appears. This is one of the reasons why goiter is more common in the Black Sea region. We do not strictly prohibit this food, but we recommend that its consumption be reduced.”