Dr Oz: Thyroid Guard Controversy: Do Mammograms Cause Cancer?


Dr Oz: Thyroid Guards & Thyroid Cancer

DR OZ FANS UPDATE: The recaps of this Dr Oz Show are now posted online.  Here are the relevant links:

Last fall, Dr Oz warned us about how X-Rays and Mammograms can cause Thyroid Cancer, especially if people do not insist on having Thyroid Guards during these tests.  If you missed this show, click here for the recap: Dr Oz Thyroid Cancer.  Since Thyroid Cancer is the fastest growing cancer among women, this alarmed many people and a chain of e-mails went all around the country to warn friends and family members to ask for Thyroid Guards before getting X-Rays or Mammograms.  Apparently, a group of doctors and dentists became angry with Dr Oz for giving such advice and even went so far as to say that Thyroid Guards are not necessary to prevent Thyroid Cancer.  So, Dr Oz will talk with several of these doctors and dentists on The Doctor Oz Show on Thursday, April 14, 2011.  I wonder what the final conclusion will be on this so-called Thyroid Guard Controversy.  It seems to me that at the very minimum, Thyroid Guards cannot hurt, so why not ask for them as Dr Oz suggested on his original show?

Dr Oz: Cancer Preventing Foods

Dr Oz will also give a list of the Top 5 Cancer Preventing Foods on his show on April 14, 2011.  Previously, Doctor Oz gave an Anti-Cancer Grocery List that Dr Oz Thyroid Guardincluded suggestions for vegetables, fruits, whole grains, proteins, herbs and spices that all fight Cancer (click here to get the full list: Dr Oz Anti-Cancer Grocery List).  And he did another segment where he named the following foods as his 5 Cancer Preventing Foods: bok choy, cooked tomatoes, flounder, strawberries and artichokes (click here to read more about how these foods fight off Cancer: Dr Oz Cancer Fighting Foods).  So it should be interesting to see Dr Oz’s new list of foods that prevent Cancer.  In addition, Dr Oz will do a segment on some of the Wildest Alternative Health Therapies and Exotic Natural Remedies.  Plus, Dr Oz will bring Geoffrey Zakarian, a judge on Food Network’s TV Show called Chopped, to do a healthy cooking competition.  The last time that Dr Oz did a “cooking contest” was when he challenged three ladies to make healthy meals in 2 minutes with only the use of a microwave (click here to read the winning recipe: Dr Oz Microwave Recipes).


  1. Rad Doc says

    Thyroid shields do not prevent the minimal radiation that reaches the thyroid gland on a mammogram. This radiation is in the form of internal scatter (from inside the body). The statement that a ‘thyroid shield couldn’t hurt’ when used for mammography is also potentially incorrect. If the thyroid shield inhibits optimal positioning of the patient, repeat images will be acquired which would increase the total radiation dose to the patient. Dr. Oz’s statements are based on false assumptions and not an understanding of medical physics.

  2. diana clause hughes says

    please, for what it’s worth….i am 64 and have very soft teeth. i have had hundreds of dental x-rays since childhood, not to mention numerous other x-rays for surgeries, mammograms, etc. i discovered my throid condition when i was 35. i never heard anything like you’re teaching on your show til now. even tho, i don’t have cancer of the thyroid at this time, i will begin asking for the guard….big deal “I”D RATHER BE SAFE THAN SORRY”….there is more harm/danger in not guarding your thyroid, than there is in protecting it any way you can. thank you so much for your show….sincerely, diana

  3. Shel B. says

    I am on your side Dr. Oz. Wear your thyroid guards ladies and get your exams if you need them. Of course, you couldn’t wear one if it was the area that need to be xrayed but otherwise ask for one or buy one yourself and take it to the xray place. Oh heck yeah I am wearing one now. Dr. Oz cares more about us ladies than these societies do. Help yourself and keep watching Dr. Oz for your own health because no one else cares like Dr. Oz. GO DR. OZ!!!!

  4. says

    My husband was diagnosed with thyroid cancer three years ago and has two surgeries and another one coming up. We have an 8 year old daughter , do you think I will from now on request a thyroid guard for her at dental appts and other appts in the future??? You bet I will!! How can you not be better safe than sorry ? The dr’s on the show today made me furious..it’s easy to say if you’ve never dealt with thyroid cancer.

  5. Norma Jean Baker says

    I have always believed mammograms cause breast cancer..They do not prevent it..Before mammograms came in existance, we never heard of women dying of breast cancer..I would like for some origination in each state, do research on 1,000 women who have died of breast cancer in the past 25 years, if they had there regular mammograms..I am willing to bet at least 90% had regular mammograms..What does that tell us…Also, I believe dental XRays and chest Xrays cause cancer..ANY kind of XRay has the potential to cause cancer..

  6. Tracy London says

    @ Norma. Like you I am wary of mammograms. I instinctively felt that anything which “crushes” your breast in order to do it’s job, can’t be healthy. I did some research and what I found completely put me off having mammograms. All I did was type in “Mammograms pros and cons” on Google and boy oh boy did I open a can of worms. There has already been extensive research on this very thing from well regarded proffessionals. I can recommend everyone do the same as I did and get yourselves in the know

  7. Natasha says

    Actually Norma, breast cancer is one of the oldest detected cancers in our history. The first recorded case was in 1600BCE, in Egypt. George Washington’s mother died of the disease. It wasn’t until the 17th and 18th centuries that medicine finally gave it a name, but it has definitely been around for a long time.

    You are correct that any radiation has the chance of causing cancer. But you also receive a radiation dose the moment you walk in the sun. You even receive a dose sitting in your chair. The electromagnetic spectrum is all around us, and we have evolved to cope with that. Our DNA is very good at repairing itself when damaged by ionising radiation.

    Artificially irradiating patients for medical purposes is a carefully regulated industry, with many requirements of training placed on those that use it to diagnose disease. We know what we are talking about, and have research to back it up.

    A mammogram has a 1 in 100 000 chance of causing breast cancer. You would sooner get cancer from smoking a packet of cigarettes first. Alternatively, there is a 1 in 11 chance of getting breast cancer if you’re a woman (1 in 100 if you’re a man). I know what chance I would take.

    @ Tracey, “crushing” the breast is not harmful Breast tissue is wonderfully elastic (it has to be, to be able to cope with breast feeding and producing milk). Having a mammogram may just save your life. Googling pros and cons is not the same as looking at peer-reviewed research and consulting with your doctor. You can publish anything on the internet.

    If anything, at least consider an ultrasound or MRI. They detect different things to a mammogram, but at least it’s something.

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