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Cancer Genetics

What is Thyroglobulin?

04/01/1999

Question:

On a test for thyroglobulin if the range for an adult is 0 - 55. What does a reading of 2872 mean?

Answer:

According to Wallach`s Interpretation of Diagnostic Tests, serum thyroglobulin may be elevated in individuals with an enlarged thyroid gland (a goiter) with multiple nodules or it may be increased in an individual with a cancer of the thyroid gland.

A radioactive scan of the thyroid is usually necessary along with a needle biopsy of any nodules to determine if cancer is present.

If a person has already been diagnosed with thyroid cancer and had the thyroid gland removed surgically, increased thyroglobulin levels may detect the presence of metastatic or widespread cancer.

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Response by:

Heather L Hampel, MS, CGC Heather L Hampel, MS, CGC
Cancer Genetic Counselor
College of Medicine
The Ohio State University

Judith A Westman, MD Judith A Westman, MD
Associate Professor, Clinical Internal Medicine, Pediatrics and Medical Biochemistry
College of Medicine
The Ohio State University