What is thyroid cancer?

Thyroid cancer is when abnormal cells in the thyroid gland start to divide and grow in an uncontrolled way. 

Symptoms of thyroid cancer

The symptoms of thyroid cancer include a lump in your neck, a hoarse voice, a sore throat or difficulty in swallowing. 

Getting diagnosed

Your GP will ask about your symptoms. They'll decide whether to refer you for tests or to a specialist. 

Survival for thyroid cancer

Survival for thyroid cancer depends upon the type and stage of your thyroid cancer.

Stages and types

There are different types of thyroid cancer. The stage of a cancer tells you its size and whether it has spread. It helps your doctor decide which treatment you need. 


Possible treatments include surgery, radiotherapy, targeted drugs and chemotherapy. What treatment you have depends on your type of thyroid cancer, how big it is and whether it's spread anywhere else in your body.

Research and clinical trials

Find out about the latest UK research looking at thyroid cancer.

Living with thyroid cancer

Get support to cope during and after thyroid cancer treatment.

Risks and causes of thyroid cancer

Some factors might increase your risk of developing thyroid cancer. This doesn’t mean that you will definitely develop thyroid cancer if you have any of them.

Last reviewed: 
18 Feb 2021
Next review due: 
19 Feb 2024
Coronavirus and cancer

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