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Growths on the thyroid are often called nodules. Most thyroid nodules (more than 90 percent) are benign (not cancer). Benign nodules are not as harmful as malignant nodules.
Cancer cells can spread by breaking away from the original tumor. They enter blood vessels or lymph vessels, which branch into all the tissues of the body. The cancer cells attach to other organs and grow to form new tumors that may damage those organs. The spread of cancer is called metastasis.
There are several types of thyroid cancer: