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E3270. Histologic Subtypes of Thyroid Cancer: Review for Radiologists

Trifanov D1,  Kushchayev S1,  Kushchayeva Y2,  Gowdra Halappa V1,  Teytelboym O.1 1. Mercy Catholic Medical Center, Darby, PA; 2. National Institute of Health, Bethesda, MD

Address correspondence to D. Trifanov (

Background Information: Imaging plays a key role in diagnosis, staging, treatment, and follow-up of thyroid cancer. This presentation provides an imaging-based overview of thyroid cancer subtypes and imaging characteristics. We summarize current diagnostic and therapeutic approaches to metastatic thyroid disease based on the subtypes of thyroid cancer.

Educational Goals/Teaching Points: We review, illustrate, and discuss histopathologic subtypes of thyroid carcinoma; review hereditary syndromes associated with thyroid cancer; review, illustrate, and discuss common and uncommon sites of local and distant spread of thyroid cancer metastases; review the imaging techniques used for definitive characterization of thyroid metastases on ultrasound, CT, MRI, and FDG PET; and illustrate novel nuclear medicine diagnostic techniques, including 18F-DOPA and 67GA-DOTA PET.

Key Anatomic/Physiologic Issues and Imaging Findings/Techniques: We present a brief review of the most common subtypes of thyroid cancer, a review of the histologic characteristics of different subtypes of thyroid cancer, imaging of primary and metastatic thyroid cancer, using ultrasound, CT, MRI, and novel nuclear medicine diagnostic techniques, including 18F-DOPA and 67GA-DOTA PET.

Conclusion: Radiologists should be familiar with imaging presentations of various thyroid cancer types and typical patterns of metastatic disease. New emerging PET tracers are offering unique diagnostic capabilities, particularly for imaging of medullary carcinoma. Understanding of work-up strategies and clinical management of thyroid cancer can help to streamline communication with referring clinicians.