Medullary Thyroid Carcinoma: from diagnosis to treatment

Hans Verbeek

    Research output: ThesisThesis fully internal (DIV)

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    Medullary thyroid carcinoma (MTC) is a rare neuroendocrine tumor, originating from the calcitonin producing C-cells in the thyroid. This thesis covers important clinical problems encountered in the diagnosis and treatment of primary and recurrent MTC.
    Controversy exists about calcitonin screening in patients with thyroid nodules. We addressed the routine use of the calcitonin test in a formal meta-analysis. Although the sensitivity and specificity of the calcitonin test were high, a large number of patients with a positive test, do not have MTC due to the low prevalence. This limits the use of routine calcitonin testing in patients with thyroid nodules.
    Optimal surgical treatment for MTC is crucial because no adjuvant treatment is available. We evaluated the current guidelines with respect to clinical outcome. Treatment according to guidelines improves biochemical cure and leads to fewer cancer reoperations. Referral centers treated patients more often according to these guidelines.
    Early detection of patients with recurrent MTC is important because appropriate therapeutic interventions may delay further deterioration. We assessed two functional imaging methods , 18F-FDG PET and 18F-DOPA PET, for detecting recurrent disease in MTC. While 18F-FDG PET is superior in detecting progressive disease 18F-DOPA PET can more accurately assess the extent of disease.
    For the systemic treatment of recurrent MTC, tyrosine kinase inhibitors are currently available. As MTC can be caused by different mutations, we evaluated if there is specificity for different tyrosine kinase inhibitors. Specificity of the TK inhibitors for different mutations exists, suggesting that mutation-specific therapies might be of benefit for MTC patients
    Translated title of the contributionMedullair schildkliercarcinoom: van diagnose tot behandeling
    Original languageEnglish
    QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
    Awarding Institution
    • University of Groningen
    • Links, Thera, Supervisor
    • Plukker, John, Supervisor
    • Hofstra, Robert, Supervisor
    Award date7-Jan-2015
    Place of Publication[S.l.]
    Print ISBNs978-90-367-7392-8
    Electronic ISBNs978-90-367-7391-1
    Publication statusPublished - 2015

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