Medullary Thyroid Cancer (MTC)

The thyroid’s inner region is called the medulla. It contains special cells that produce and release hormones. These cells are called parafollicular C cells. Medullary Thyroid Cancer (MTC) occurs when the C cells turn cancerous and start growing.

Thyroid cancers are of four different types. MTC is the rarest of them, making up 3% to 4% of all thyroid cancers.


Symptoms of MTC

If you experience any one of these symptoms, visit Dr. Suvadip Chakrabarti, the best thyroid cancer doctor in Kolkata.

  1. Lump or nodule in the thyroid
  2. Enlarged lymph nodes in the neck or other parts of the body
  3. Pain in the neck, jaw, or ear
  4. Difficulty with breathing or swallowing.
  5. Croaky or hoarse voice

MTC is more aggressive than any other type of thyroid cancer. It is usually easy to treat and control if it is discovered before it spreads to lymph nodes in the neck or other parts of the body.



Thyroid cancer is usually diagnosed by a fine needle aspiration biopsy of a thyroid nodule, says Dr. Suvadip Chakrabarti, the best oncologist in Kolkata. If the results suggest the presence of MTC, further evaluation is required in regards to the content of calcitonin and carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA) in the blood. Patients with MTC have elevated levels of these proteins.


Surgery is the primary treatment for MTC. Dr. Chakrabarti says that total thyroidectomy, which is the removal of the entire thyroid gland, is the accepted approach. Neck or upper chest lymph nodes infected with thyroid cancer are usually removed at the time of thyroid surgery. After surgery, thyroid hormone replacement medication is required to be taken by patients for life.

Iodine is not taken up by MTC, therefore, radioactive iodine treatment is not possible for patients with MTC.

Imaging prior to surgery is required for patients who have high levels of calcitonin, to see the regions where the tumor has spread. If imaging shows cancer outside the neck, surgery should be aimed at reducing local complications caused by the tumor. This surgery is known as lobectomy. In addition to surgery, other treatment options like external beam radiation, or chemotherapy may need to be used.

If you are looking for thyroid cancer treatment in Kolkata, visit Dr. Suvadip Chakrabarti, the best oncologist in Kolkata. Dr. Suvadip Chakrabarti provides expert surgical services – Lobectomy, Thyroidectomy and Lymph Node removal.