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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everyone! I have a lot of questions about RAI. I'll give you my story. I am 44 and had a 2.7 cm nodule on my right thyroid and had a partial thyroidectomy on June 27th. The nodule tested positive for papillary thyroid cancer so I had a completion thyroidectomy on August 10th. The left thyroid was cancer free. I don't go back to my Endo until September 15th so I won't get any answers until then but the surgeon's office thinks they will have me do RAI. My cancer wasn't to the edge of my thyroid but came less than 1 mm from the edge. I have some questions:

Are there any tests I would need before the RAI treatment?

Am I administered the pill/liquid at home or at the hospital/dr. office?

How long would I need to be quarantined? I live at home with my husband and 2 teenage daughters.

I realize everyone's experience is different but I would appreciate if anyone has any stories and info they'd like to share. :)
 

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I might ask for a whole body radioiodine uptake scan before RAI. It can detect the presence of remnant thyroid cells.

Did they take/test and lymph nodes? Did you only have one cancerous nodule? Have you had your thyroglobulin tested since surgery?

I'll tell you I had RAI and I don't regret it...BUT there are risks with the procedure and the American Thyroid Association is pulling WAY back on their recommendations for using it. My guess is because you are over 40, they will push for it and that's fine. Just do your research. I just got home from vacation but when I catch my breath, I'll try to get you links to the new guidelines.

To answer your other questions:

Most people are given RAI at the hospital by either a radiation oncologist or a nuclear medicine specialist.

Isolation guidelines vary based upon the size of your dose, but with most smaller/modest doses, you need to take some kind of restrictions for at least 3 days.
 
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I might ask for a whole body radioiodine uptake scan before RAI. It can detect the presence of remnant thyroid cells.
Did they take/test and lymph nodes? Did you only have one cancerous nodule? Have you had your thyroglobulin tested since surgery?
I'll tell you I had RAI and I don't regret it...BUT there are risks with the procedure and the American Thyroid Association is pulling WAY back on their recommendations for using it. My guess is because you are over 40, they will push for it and that's fine. Just do your research. I just got home from vacation but when I catch my breath, I'll try to get you links to the new guidelines.
To answer your other questions:
Most people are given RAI at the hospital by either a radiation oncologist or a nuclear medicine specialist.
Isolation guidelines vary based upon the size of your dose, but with most smaller/modest doses, you need to take some kind of restrictions for at least 3 days.
Thank you so much for replying. I'm not sure about the lymph nodes. My follow-up was with my ENT surgeon's PA. He said that the surgeon will usually look and feel the lymph nodes during the second surgery so I assume she did that. There was no mention of lymph nodes in the pathology report. There was a .7 cm nodule in my left thyroid but it wasn't cancerous. I haven't had any follow-up blood work yet but it's only been 17 days. I go see my Endocrinologist September 15th so I guess they will order blood work then.
 
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