'American Idol' alum Jax battling thyroid cancer

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DIY Thyroid Check

During a radio interview Monday morning (Aug. 8), American Idol season 14 alum Jax revealed that she is battling thyroid cancer.

The 20-year-old -- who finished in third place on the Fox competition show in 2015 -- was diagnosed in April and underwent surgery to remove the thyroid and other cancerous lymph nodes.

Jax told NJ 101.5 host Bill Spadea that after her show at New York's Webster Hall in the spring, she was diagnosed with Hashimoto's disease, a condition in which one's immune system attacks the thyroid, according to the Mayo Clinic. It is most common in middle-aged men and women but can strike at any age.

"People don't realize how important the thyroid is. It's more important than the actual brain," Jax said. "It was messing me up emotionally, putting me in a strange place."

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Shortly before the Webster Hall concert, Jax said she was already feeling off. "I was going through a lot, traveling a lot, living out of a suitcase. But I was waking up tired a lot, losing my voice and just kind of depressed and in a really dark place. My parents knew something was up because it wasn't normal," Jax said.

A look back at the 'American Idol' finale earlier this year:

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American Idol Finale
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: American Idol Season 15 winner Trent Harmon performs coronation song onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: American Idol Season 15 winner Trent Harmon (R), host Ryan Seacrest (L) and finalist La'Porsha Renae speak onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: American Idol Season 15 winner Trent Harmon (C) performs coronation song with cast of Season 15 onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: American Idol Season 15 winner Trent Harmon (R) and finalist La'Porsha Renae embrace onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
George Huff performs at the "American Idol" farewell season finale at the Dolby Theatre on Thursday, April 7, 2016, in Los Angeles. (Photo by Matt Sayles/Invision/AP)
Trent Harmon, winner of "American Idol" The Farewell Season celebrates with fellow contestants during the season finale at the Dolby Theatre on Thursday, April 7, 2016, in Los Angeles. (Photo by Matt Sayles/Invision/AP)
Ryan Seacrest, left, and Carrie Underwood speak at the "American Idol" farewell season finale at the Dolby Theatre on Thursday, April 7, 2016, in Los Angeles. (Photo by Matt Sayles/Invision/AP)
Kris Allen performs at the "American Idol" farewell season finale at the Dolby Theatre on Thursday, April 7, 2016, in Los Angeles. (Photo by Matt Sayles/Invision/AP)
William Hung performs at the "American Idol" farewell season finale at the Dolby Theatre on Thursday, April 7, 2016, in Los Angeles. (Photo by Matt Sayles/Invision/AP)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: (L-R) Season 1 judges Paula Abdul and Randy Jackson and the cast of Season 15 present host Ryan Seacrest with a gift onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - APRIL 7: Judge Jennifer Lopez performs onstage at FOX's American Idol Season 15 Finale on April 7, 2016 at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Ray Mickshaw/FOX via Getty Images)
Phillip Phillips performs at the "American Idol" farewell season finale at the Dolby Theatre on Thursday, April 7, 2016, in Los Angeles. (Photo by Matt Sayles/Invision/AP)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: Recording artists Keith Urban (L) and Carrie Underwood perform onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: Host Ryan Seacrest (L) and Brian Dunkleman speak onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: (L-R) Recording artists Harry Connick, Jr., Jennifer Lopez and Keith Urban enter onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: Actress/singer Jennifer Lopez greets fans onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: Singers Trent Harmon (L) and La'Porsha Renae perform onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: Host Ryan Seacrest (L) and Brian Dunkleman speak onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: Singers Trent Harmon (L) and La'Porsha Renae perform onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: Fans attend FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: (L-R) Recording artists Pia Toscano, Kimberley Locke, Allison Iraheta, Jordin Sparks and Tamyra Gray perform onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: (L-R) Recording artists Jordin Sparks, Allison Iraheta, Tamyra Gray and Justin Guarini perform onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: Recording artist Jordin Sparks performs onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: Recording artist Pia Toscano performs onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: Recording artist Jordin Sparks performs onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: Recording artists Justin Guarini (R) and Jordin Sparks perform onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: Recording artist Colton Dixon performs onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: Recording artists Kimberley Locke (L) and Allison Iraheta perform onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: Recording artist Chris Daughtry performs onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: Singer Bo Bice performs onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: (L-R) Recording artists Caleb Johnson, Constantine Maroulis, Chris Daughtry, James Durbin and Bo Bice perform onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: Recording artists Constantine Maroulis (L) and James Durbin perform onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: Recording artist James Durbin performs onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: (L-R) Recording artists Bucky Covington, Ace Young, Constantine Maroulis and Scotty McCreery perform onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: Recording artist Jessica Sanchez performs onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: Singer Carly Smithson performs onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: Recording artists Katharine McPhee (L) and Casey James perform onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - APRIL 7: Judge Jennifer Lopez performs onstage at FOX's American Idol Season 15 Finale on April 7, 2016 at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Ray Mickshaw/FOX via Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: Singers Marley Fletcher (L) and Harry Connick, Jr. perform onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: Recording artist Fantasia performs onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: Singer Candice Glover performs onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: Host Ryan Seacrest speaks in the audience during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: American Idol Season 15 winner Trent Harmon (R), host Ryan Seacrest (L) and finalist La'Porsha Renae speak onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: American Idol Season 15 winner Trent Harmon (R), host Ryan Seacrest (L) and finalist La'Porsha Renae speak onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - APRIL 07: Recording artists Keith Urban (L) and Carrie Underwood perform onstage during FOX's 'American Idol' Finale For The Farewell Season at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. at Dolby Theatre on April 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
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While she was grocery shopping, she said, she felt a lump in her throat and reluctantly decided to get it checked out at an urgent care facility, which prescribed antibiotics and ordered an ultrasound and extra tests. The tests revealed 18 tumors on her thyroid -- 12 of which were cancerous. All were successfully removed (she refers to the surgical scar on her neck as a "shark bite"), and the singer is undergoing iodine treatments.

"I'm radioactive right now," she said.

Despite her struggle, the East Brunswick, New Jersey, resident said she is gearing up to compete in the Nov. 6 TCS NYC Marathon on behalf of Tuesday's Children and has set up a donation's page for fans to contribute to the run. She also will release new music in the fall.

"I didn't want to publicize what I was going through, but my team and family insisted that it was something I should share with the people that have stuck by me all this time. I know I have been totally MIA for a few months and I do owe you guys an explanation. You have been with me through thick and thin," she said.

Jax shared her journey on Facebook. Watch below:


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