Endocrine cancers are a mixed group of diseases in which cancer cells are found in tissues of the endocrine system, which includes the thyroid, adrenal, pancreas, parathyroid and pituitary glands.
More than 25,000 people are diagnosed with thyroid cancer in the United States each year, but other types of endocrine cancer are rare. Although tumors of other endocrine glands are not uncommon, they are almost always benign. The difference between a cancer and a benign tumor (“adenoma”) is that cancers spread by invading neighboring or distant tissue, whereas benign tumors do not spread. Because endocrine glands normally secrete hormones, tumors of these glands may also secret hormones, often in abnormal amounts. However, the fact that a tumor secretes a hormone does not make it benign (or cancerous). This feature is determined solely based on the capacity of the tumor to spread out of its normal position.
At the OSU Comprehensive Cancer Center - James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute, we have experts in this highly specialized field who have dedicated their lives to supporting and caring for cancer patients and their families. Our team approach provides the best cancer research and treatment, putting our physicians and researchers on the leading edge of advances in detecting and treating endocrine cancers.
If you have questions about endocrine cancers, please call The James Line – a free cancer information resource and physician referral service – at 614-293-5066 or 1-800-293-5066 (outside Franklin County) or e-mail now. The James Line oncology nurses can
be reached Monday-Friday 8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. (except weekends and