Tests and diagnosis

By Mayo Clinic Staff

Multimedia

Tests and procedures used to diagnose Hurthle cell cancer include:

  • Physical exam. Your doctor will examine your neck, checking the size of your thyroid and seeing whether your lymph nodes are swollen.
  • Blood tests. They may reveal abnormalities in your thyroid function that give your doctor more information about your condition.
  • Imaging tests. They can help your doctor determine whether an abnormal growth is present in the thyroid. Imaging tests may include ultrasound, CT scan, MRI and positron emission tomography (PET).
  • Removing a sample of thyroid tissue for testing (biopsy). During a thyroid biopsy, a fine needle is passed through the skin of your neck guided by ultrasound images. The needle is attached to a syringe, which withdraws a sample of thyroid tissue. The sample is analyzed in a laboratory for signs of cancer.
Jan. 24, 2015

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