Why does the thyroid gland need protection after a nuclear accident?

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Why does the thyroid gland need protection after a nuclear accident?

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The thyroid hormones contain iodine and the thyroid gland actively concentrates iodine from the bloodstream. Most nuclear accidents release radioactive iodine, which can damage thyroid cells and cause thyroid cancer. Babies and young children are at highest risk of developing thyroid cancer after being exposed to a nuclear accident.