What types of Thyroid Cancer are there?

There are five main types of thyroid cancer:

  • Papillary (>70%)
  • Follicular (15%)
  • Medullary (7%)
  • Anaplastic (2%)
  • Lymphoma (<1%)

Papillary and follicular thyroid cancers arise from follicular cells, as do anaplastic thyroid cancers. Medullary thyroid cancers arise from the para-follicular cells and lymphomas arise from the stroma.

Squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) of the thyroid is extremely rare (less than 1% of thyroid cancers). The tumours often tend to be advanced at presentation, and have been reported to resemble the clinical behaviour of anaplastic carcinoma. The tumour seems to have a poor response to radiotherapy, but long-term survival is possible if the disease is diagnosed early and is completely resected.

All patients with Thyroid Cancer are discussed at the Bupa Cromwell Endocrine Multidisiplinary Team Meetings (MDT).