The former model who inspired the song “Girl from Ipanema”, Helo Pinheiro will have to be isolated for at least five days after undergoing treatment with radioactive iodine for a thyroid cancer. The known iodine therapy treatment emits radiation that can unnecessarily expose others who come into contact with it during the period.
The 76-year-old presenter underwent surgery to completely remove the thyroid after discovering a malignant tumor. “This disease is silent. I felt nothing but the heat, which I knew was not from menopause, which I had already gone through without feeling them,” she said in an interview with the magazine Who.
“I changed the hormone dosage because of the heat I was feeling and my doctor asked me to have a thyroid ultrasound, which detected some nodules. I underwent a biopsy and one of them had lymphatic carcinoma”, recalls the presenter who underwent surgery to completely remove the thyroid.
Treatment with radioactive iodine will start in September, according to Helo. It serves to eliminate traces of cancer cells after removal of the thyroid, reducing the risk of the cancer coming back.
Before starting the treatment, Helô Pinheiro will also have to make a special preparation, which consists of adjustments in the diet. About two weeks earlier, she will need to adopt a low-iodine diet.
Iodotherapy consists of the oral administration (liquid or capsule) of radioactive iodine. It is indicated in certain cases of hyperthyroidism or thyroid cancer. Depending on the dose to be administered, the patient needs to be hospitalized in an appropriate room, due to the radiation.
Signs of Thyroid Cancer
Thyroid cancer, most of the time, does not present specific symptoms in the initial stage and many of these cases are detected in routine consultations.
The American Cancer Society lists the following signs:
- Nodule, lump or swelling in the neck, sometimes growing rapidly;
- Swelling in the neck;
- Pain in the anterior part of the neck, sometimes radiating to the ear region;
- Hoarseness or other voice changes that do not go away;
- Difficulty swallowing;
- Difficulty breathing;
- Constant coughing.