A Simple Neck Massage Leads to a Diagnosis of Thyroid Cancer

According to a story from World Lifestyle, Emmy and Jake were high school sweethearts, destined for love. Indeed, even after years apart, the two found themselves together again after graduating from college. However, the situation became dire for the couple after a simple neck massage when Jake detected a noticeable lump on Emmy’s neck. As it turned out, she had thyroid cancer.

About Thyroid Cancer

Thyroid cancer develops from the tissues of the thyroid, an endocrine gland that is located in the neck which plays a major role in synthesizing proteins and regulating metabolism. There is some uncertainty as to what can cause thyroid cancer to appear, but some risk factors include radiation exposure, other disease of the thyroid, genetic disorders of the endocrine system, family history, and an enlarged thyroid. This cancer does not always cause symptoms, but when it does they can include a noticeable swelling or lump in the neck, enlarged lymph nodes, changes to the vocal tone, and pain in the neck. Treatment includes radiation therapy and surgery. Overall five year survival rates for thyroid cancer are good, at 98 percent; rarer types can be more dangerous and metastasis substantially reduces the chances of long term survival. To learn more about thyroid cancer, click here.

A Tough Journey Ahead

Emmy’s prognosis was not good. She had been diagnosed with one of the rarer and more aggressive types of thyroid cancer. Doctors told her that it was incurable. The cancer had already spread to her liver, bones, lungs, and spine. At another appointment her doctors announced another potentially devastating blow: she would not be able to have children.

Despite enduring intense treatment, the couple embarked on a bike ride across Europe to raise money for hospital that was treating Emmy. Unfortunately, it was becoming clear that she may not have much time. The couple got married and an old friend from high school, Liz, agreed to be a surrogate mother for Jake and Emmy.

Loss and Grief

Eighteen months after receiving her diagnosis, Emmy’s thyroid cancer claimed her life. Additionally, the attempted surrogate procedure also failed. More recently, Jake vowed to run ten marathons in a two month period to raise more money for the hospital that had done its best to treat Emmy.

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