I was reading about advances in thyroid cancer treatments and really, there have been few to no changes since the 1950's! Apparently, the scientific community found something that worked pretty well so they figured why fix it. Well, with the emergence of more aggressive thyroid cancers and RAI resistant strains, there are more and more research projects out there. Most of them deal with advanced (with distant mets) or non-RAI avid (doesn't uptake the radioactive iodine) types but there is currently ONE clinical trial out there for stage 1&2 papillary thyroid cancer. There are 2 locations running this trial - Bethesda, MD and Washington DC and both are currently accepting participants.
So why am I thinking about this? After all, its basically like being a human guinea pig or donating your body to science before you are gone, right?
Well, let me tell you some small details of this trial. They are doing RAI therapy in small doses (30mCi instead of standard 100-200 mCi) given with small doses of Lithium. I know that the RAI is "safe" and I know that the Lithium is "safe" and of course the placebo pill is safe. So this isn't involving some new, crazy drug. Apparently, the docs believe that the Lithium increases the uptake time and sensitivity of the RAI so the body isn't exposed to so much radiation. The lower dose of radiation has less risk of side effects...and if the small dose doesn't kill off the cancer, you can get another dose.
So it seems there are a lot of good points to this one and I could be helping future thyroid cancer patients. Anyone have thoughts to ponder on this?