New Delhi: Lack of awareness and a delay in diagnosis can prove costly for those suffering from thyroid cancer, a condition that has till date affected about 42 million people in India, according to medical experts.
Thyroid cancer proves a paradox to the medical fraternity because it is one of the deadliest yet most curable form of cancer in the world according to doctors.
"According to official statistics, the number of thyroid patients in India is one-tenth of 48,000 Americans who are suffering from thyroid cancer. So, we can officially put around 5000 to 6000 patients in India are suffering from thyroid cancer," says Dr C S Bal, Professor in Nuclear Medicine at the All India Institute of Medical Science.
Bal points out that this is simply the data that has been made available to doctors by government hospitals. "The unaccounted number of patients who are being treated in private hospitals may be even more which puts the number at one to two cases per 10,000 Indians," says Bal.

Thyroid cancer starts in the thyroid gland that produces thyroid hormones which are important in the normal regulation of the metabolism of the body. The exact cause of thyroid cancer remains unknown and the common symptoms include a lump or thyroid nodule in the neck, trouble with swallowing, throat or neck pain, swollen lymph nodes in the neck, persistent cough and vocal changes.
"Initially I saw small nodules in my neck and later when I was pregnant I went to the Amritsar Cancer Hospital to get it checked thoroughly where the doctor declared that I had thyroid cancer," says 40-year Kuldeep Kaur whose life was turned upside down after she discovered small nodules on her neck after she underwent surgery after a bike accident and was diagnosed with thyroid cancer.


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