In an upcoming memoir, Jared Kushner, Donald Trump’s son-in-law, discloses that he has been undergoing treatment for thyroid cancer since 2019, including during his time as a senior White House adviser in the Trump White House.
“On the morning that I traveled to Texas to attend the opening of a Louis Vuitton factory, White House physician Sean Conley pulled me into the medical cabin on Air Force One, ‘Your test results came back from Walter Reed. It looks like you have cancer. We need to schedule a surgery right away,’” Kushner writes in Breaking History: A White House Memoir. “This was a personal problem and not for public consumption,” he adds.
The former White House senior adviser writes that the cancer was caught early and he underwent surgery to remove a “substantial part” of his thyroid. “Luckily, the impact [of the surgery] was minimal,” he writes.
About 1.2% of men and women will be diagnosed with thyroid cancer during their lifetime, according to Med Page Today. Located at the base of the neck and shaped like a butterfly, the thyroid gland plays an important role in regulating metabolism, body temperature, growth and body development by constantly releasing thyroid hormones into the bloodstream.
It’s estimated that about 43,800 people will be diagnosed with thyroid cancer in the United States this year, leading to nearly 2,230 deaths, according to data from the National Cancer Institute (NCI). This accounts for 2.3% of all diagnosed cancer cases and 0.4% of all cancer deaths.
In 2019, about 915,700 people were estimated to be living with thyroid cancer, according to the NCI surveillance information. Data from 2012 to 2018 show that the five-year relative survival rate—meaning how many people are alive five years after their diagnosis—is 98.4%.
There are four main types of thyroid cancer. The most common in the United States is papillary thyroid cancer (PTC), which makes up about 80% of all thyroid cancers, followed by follicular thyroid cancer (FTC), which accounts for about 15%. Both types grow slowly.
The standard treatment for PTC and FTC involves surgical options that include total thyroidectomy, which removes the thyroid gland entirely, or lobectomy, which is used to treat low-risk lesions and removes only part of the gland.
Cancer Health’s Thyroid Cancer Basics offers more information on this type of cancer:
Women are more likely than men to develop thyroid cancer, accounting for nearly three quarters of all cases. Women are also more likely to develop thyroid cancer in their 40s and 50s, while men typically do so at age 60 or older.
Genetics and family history are risk factors for some types of thyroid cancer. Radiation exposure, including receiving medical radiation for diagnosis or treatment during childhood, increases thyroid cancer risk. Low iodine in the diet is a risk factor in some parts of the world.
Any of the following signs and symptoms might mean thyroid cancer is developing:
- A lump in the neck that grows quickly
- Swelling in the neck
- Pain in the front of the neck
- Hoarseness or changes in the voice
- Difficulty swallowing
- Difficulty breathing
- A persistent unexplained cough.
For related articles, click #Thyroid Cancer. You’ll find headlines such as “Why Have Thyroid Cancer Diagnoses Spiked for U.S. Women?” and “FDA Approves Cabometyx for Differentiated Thyroid Cancer.”