Several cases of thyroid cancer have been linked to sitagliptin, an active drug in Janumet (sitagliptin / metformin). Janumet thyroid cancer treatments may include surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy, drug treatments, and hormone supplements if the thyroid gland is removed. Fortunately, thyroid cancer is readily treatable, although long-term follow-up care is necessary to check for recurrent cancer.
Janumet treats type-2 diabetes with two drugs: sitagliptin and metformin. Unfortunately, several reports of thyroid cancer have been reported in patients taking sitagliptin, according to a recent study of the FDA adverse event database. Furthermore, Victoza (liraglutide), a drug that is very similar to sitagliptin, has been shown to cause thyroid cancer in rodents, which prompted a Drug Safety Warning from the FDA. Experts do not know if Janumet is a cause of thyroid cancer, but patients should be aware of the symptoms so they can receive Janumet thyroid cancer treatment as soon as possible.
- Surgery to remove all or part of the thyroid gland
- Radiation therapy and/or chemotherapy
- Medications to control pain
- Hormone supplements if the thyroid gland is removed
- Emotional support
- And more
Surgery to Remove Thyroid Cancer
Thyroid cancer almost always produces symptoms and is diagnosed before it metastasizes (spreads to tissues or organs outside the thyroid). Surgery is usually the best option for treating thyroid cancer in the earliest stages.
Janumet thyroid cancer treatments may include the following surgeries:
- Lobectomy: Removal of one of the lobes of the the thyroid gland. The thyroid gland has two symmetrical lobes in a rough “butterfly”-shape. By removing only one lobe, the other is preserved to continue producing hormones, which can reduce long-term complications.
- Thyroidectomy: This surgery removes the entire thyroid gland.
- Lymphadenectomy: Aggressive thyroid cancer may spread to the lymph nodes in the neck, which may need to be removed.
Thyroid Cancer and Radiation and/or Chemotherapy Treatment
Most people who need radiation therapy for thyroid cancer will undergo radioactive iodine treatment. The patient swallows a pill or a fluid that contains iodine, which is almost completely absorbed from the blood by the thyroid gland. The radiation in the iodine kills all cells in the thyroid gland.
For aggressive or advanced cases of thyroid cancer, external beam radiation therapy may be necessary. A machine emits high-energy radiation beams directly into thyroid tissue, which kills cancer cells. This treatment is often combined with chemotherapy, which is the intravenous (IV) administration of anti-cancer medications.
Thyroid Cancer Drug Treatments
Individuals who have their thyroid removed may need to take thyroid hormone supplement medications during their Janumet thyroid cancer treatment. These hormones help regulate calcium levels in the bloodstream and the body’s metabolism.
Thyroid hormone supplements include:
- And more