Thyroid Care Collaborative Improves Adoption of Thyroid Cancer Clinical Guidelines Interview with:

Ilya Likhterov, MD Assistant Professor, Otolaryngology Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai

Dr. Ilya Likhterov

Ilya Likhterov, MD
Assistant Professor, Otolaryngology
Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: As our understanding of thyroid cancer improves, the way these patients are diagnosed and treated is changing. It is difficult for clinicians to incorporate every individual scientific study into their practice. These studies are numerous and the results can be conflicting.

To address this difficulty, organizations such as the American Thyroid Association (ATA) create summary recommendations that account for the latest research and translate it into a format that is easily usable for physicians. Such clinical practice guidelines are available not just for thyroid cancer care, but in many other fields. The difficulty however, is how to ensure that clinicians have access to the guidelines and incorporate the recommendations into their practice.

There are a number of barriers to actually using the guidelines in practice, and we attempt to identify strategies on how to overcome these. What should readers take away from your report?

Response: The best way to ensure that the latest, research based, recommendation is available and is helpful for practicing clinicians is by the use of an electronic medical record system that incorporates these recommendations. Thyroid Care Collaborative (TCC), is a thyroid disease specific system that not only stores patient information, but is able to assist the clinician in providing most up to date recommendations for the patients. Such systems also allow seamless communication between members of the care team (eg. between the surgeon and the endocrinologist). They also alert the clinician if a test is needed based on the patient specific information. TCC translates the clinical guidelines published by the ATA into a patient specific, electronic “reminder.” What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?

Response: With an rapid increase in medical knowledge, the focus needs to be on providing most accurate recommendations to patients and improving the quality of care. This can be challenging as the field is constantly changing. Technology is a perfect tool to assist physician in accomplishing this goal. Further work is needed to facilitate the use of technology in bringing most updated clinical guidelines to the fingertips of the physicians. Thank you for your contribution to the community.


Likhterov, I., Tuttle, R. M., Haser, G. C., Su, H. K., Bergman, D., Alon, E. E., Bernet, V., Brett, E., Cobin, R., Dewey, E. H., Doherty, G., Dos Reis, L. L., Klopper, J., Lee, S. L., Lupo, M. A., Machac, J., Mechanick, J. I., Milas, M., Orloff, L., Randolph, G., Ross, D. S., Rowe, M. E., Smallridge, R., Terris, D., Tufano, R. P. and Urken, M. L. (2016), Improving the adoption of thyroid cancer clinical practice guidelines. The Laryngoscope, 126: 2640–2645. doi: 10.1002/lary.25986

Note: Content is Not intended as medical advice. Please consult your health care provider regarding your specific medical condition and questions.

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Last Updated on January 25, 2017 by Marie Benz MD FAAD