A Florida TV Reporter Was Diagnosed With Cancer After An Email From A Viewer

The Editors
·4 mins read
Photo credit: Instagram
Photo credit: Instagram

From Women's Health

  • A TV news reporter in Florida was recently diagnosed with cancer thanks to a viewer.

  • Victoria Price says she received an email from a fan recommending she get her thyroid checked due to a visible lump in her throat.

  • Now, Victoria will undergo surgery to remove her thyroid and some surrounding lymph nodes.

A broadcast journalist based in Tampa Bay, Florida recently learned she has thyroid cancer, and she owes her diagnosis to a viewer who noticed a lump on her neck.

While transitioning to remote broadcasts and tirelessly covering the COVID crisis, Victoria Price wasn't on the lookout for cancer symptoms. "We were covering the most important health story in a century, but my own health was the farthest thing from my mind," she wrote on Instagram. On Monday, she said, she'll undergo surgery to remove the tumor, her thyroid, and a couple of nearby lymph nodes. "Doctor says it's spreading, but not too much, and we're hopeful this will be my first and last procedure," she wrote.

After a broadcast one day, she found a note in her email inbox, reading, "Hi, just saw your news report. What concerned me is the lump on your neck. Please have your thyroid checked. Reminds me of my neck. Mine turned out to be cancer. Take care of yourself." Price got the lump checked out, and sure enough, she was diagnosed with thyroid cancer.

"Had I never received that email, I never would have called my doctor. The cancer would have continued to spread. It's a scary and humbling thought," Price wrote. "I will forever be grateful to the woman who went out of her way to email me, a total stranger. She had zero obligation to, but she did anyway. Talk about being on your side, huh?"

Thyroid cancer is fairly common among younger women, and the survival rate is good compared to other types of cancer, according to Johns Hopkins Medicine. Fatigue is the most common symptom, which could be mistaken for stress (especially these last few months.)

“Typical thyroid cancer patients are women between the ages of 30 and 60—younger than many people would think. They’re likely to put off getting seen by a doctor and may blame their symptoms on other causes," Dr. Jonathon Russell, MD, assistant professor of Head and Neck Surgery at The Johns Hopkins Hospital said in a Hopkins blog post.

Thyroid cancer is significantly more common in women than men, due to women's hormones. Up to 80 percent of women may have thyroid nodules, and 5 to 15 percent of those growths can become cancerous. However, there's a 99 percent survival rate if diagnosed correctly. “We treat it almost like a chronic condition where the patient gets treatment and visits her doctor regularly for follow-up," Dr. Russell said.

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