Article Text

Download PDFPDF
Papillary thyroid carcinoma in a 7-year-old boy presenting with a goitre without microcalcifications and enlarged cervical lymph nodes
  1. Maria Cecilia Schultze1,
  2. Cintia Castro-Correia2,
  3. Maria Bom-Sucesso3 and
  4. Marianne Becker4
  1. 1Pediatrics, Centre Hospitalier de Luxembourg, Luxembourg, Luxembourg
  2. 2Pediatric Endocrinology and Diabetology Unit, Centro Hospitalar Universitario de Sao Joao, Porto, Portugal
  3. 3Pediatric Hematology-Oncology Unit, Hospital de Sao Joao, Porto, Portugal
  4. 4Pediatric Endocrinology and Diabetology, Centre Hospitalier de Luxembourg, Luxembourg, Luxembourg
  1. Correspondence to Dr Marianne Becker; becker.marianne{at}


The most frequent type of thyroid malignancy in children is papillary thyroid carcinoma (PTC), which usually presents as a thyroid nodule, but may also present as a diffuse infiltration with microcalcifications. Herein, we report the case of an uncommon presentation of a PTC in a 7-year-old boy. The child was referred for a goiter with cervical lymphadenopathies. Ultrasonography showed a hypervascularised goiter without microcalcifications but with numerous bilateral cervical nodular formations. A lymph node biopsy revealed metastatic thyroid cancer, hence a total thyroidectomy and complete neck dissection were performed. Histopathology confirmed a PTC. Ablative 131I, 30 mCi was performed 4 months postsurgery. At the end of this treatment, a metastatic lung nodule was identified. Since then, another three ablative 131I treatments have been administered. Thyroid cancers presenting as a diffuse infiltration without microcalcifications are rare. In the presence of lymphadenopathies, thyroid cancer needs to be suspected, even without microcalcifications.

  • paediatric oncology
  • thyroid disease
  • head and neck surgery
  • radiotherapy

Statistics from


  • Contributors MCS has written this article. CC-C and MB-S have provided information for the follow-up. MB has made corrections of the article.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.