A news reporter in Florida was diagnosed with cancer after an eagle-eyed viewer advised her about a problematic growth in her neck.
Victoria Price, a 28-year-old investigative reporter for WFLA in Tampa, shared on Twitter that she scheduled an appointment with her doctor after receiving an email from a fan on June 4 advising her to get her thyroid checked out.
“Hi, just saw your news report,” the email read. “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 later learned that she, much like the vigilant viewer, had thyroid cancer — and it was starting to spread to her lymph nodes.
Thankfully, because Price was diagnosed early in the disease’s progression, she was able to have surgery on July 27 to remove her thyroid, the tumor, and some of the surrounding lymph nodes, in what doctors said should be her “first and last procedure.”
She was discharged from Tampa General Hospital one day later on July 28 and appeared to be in good spirit on social media.
In a WFLA report, Price said she’s yet to have been able to connect with the woman who emailed her the crucial message.
“I sent an empathic thank you email earlier this week but never heard back,” she said. “Maybe she was a guardian angel? Who knows. If you’re reading this, don’t feel obligated to write back. You’ve already done so much more than you may realize.”
Price also advised readers to check their own necks — particularly women, who are disproportionately affected by thyroid cancer.
According to the American Cancer Society, there have been 52,890 new cases of thyroid cancer so far in 2020 (12,720 in men and 40,170 in women) and about 2,180 deaths from the disease (1,040 men and 1,140 women).
The key to successful treatment, as is the same with many cancers, is early diagnosis,
“Had I never received that email, I never would have called my doctor,” Price wrote on Twitter. “The cancer would have continued to spread. It’s a scary and humbling thought. I will forever be thankful to the woman who went out of her way to email me, a total stranger. She had zero obligation to, but she did anyway.”
“The world is a tough place these days,” she added. “Don’t forget to take care of yourself. Take care of each other.”
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