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Open access

Paneeraq Noahsen, Karsten F Rex, Inge Bülow Pedersen, Gert Mulvad, Hans Christian Florian-Sørensen, Michael Lynge Pedersen, and Stig Andersen

Objective

This study aimed to provide the first data on the occurrence of thyroid autoimmunity among Inuit in Greenland, a distinct ethnic group who is not iodine deficient.

Design

This study is a population-based cross-sectional study.

Methods

Data were collected in Nuuk in West Greenland and in Ammassalik district in East Greenland. Information on lifestyle, diet and diseases was obtained using questionnaires. Thyroid peroxidase antibody (TPOAb), thyroglobulin antibody (TGAb) and thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) were measured in serum. Iodine and creatinine were measured in spot urine samples.

Results

The participation rate was 95% with 434 Inuit participants; 75% were smokers. Iodine excretion was 169 µg/24 h in urban West Greenland, 224 µg/24 h in the main town and 228 µg/24 h in settlements in rural East Greenland. TPOAb, TgAb or either of these was measured in the serum from 3.7, 5.9 and 8.3% of participants, respectively. TPOAb or TgAb was found in 9.3% of Inuit women and 7.5% of men and more frequently, in East Greenland Inuit with the higher iodine excretion (P  = 0.02). There was some evidence suggesting that thyroid autoimmunity was more frequent among non-smokers (12.5%) compared to smokers (7.0%). Harbouring a thyroid autoantibody was most frequent in participants with TSH above 3.6 mIU/L (P  < 0.001).

Conclusion

Thyroid autoantibodies were rare among Greenland Inuit. While iodine nutrition was associated with autoimmunity similarly to other ethnic groups, the influence of sex and smoking was limited. This could suggest genetic component in Inuit, but the impact of cold, selenium and persistent organic pollutants needs to be elucidated.

Open access

Federica D’Aurizio, Alessia Biasotto, Claudia Cipri, Franco Grimaldi, Jessica Zucco, Stefania Marzinotto, Francesco Curcio, and Salvatore Benvenga

Introduction

Thyroid function tests (TFT) are extensively used in daily clinical practice. Here, we described a case of incongruent TFT both in a pregnant woman and in her newborn.

Case presentation

A 32-year-old woman, diagnosed with autoimmune thyroiditis during her first pregnancy, was monitored during her second gestation. At week 5 + 2 days, thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) and free thyroxine (FT4) values (Dimension VISTA 1500, Siemens Healthineers) were within normal limits. At week 19 + 5 days, TSH remained normal while FT4 increased approximately by three-fold. FT4 inconsistency was with both TSH and the clinical status since she continued to be clinically euthyroid. On the same serum sample, thyroid autoantibodies were negative. At week 25 + 4 days, the patient complained of palpitations and dyspnea, with tachycardia. Even though TSH was normal, high levels of both FT4 and free triiodothyronine (FT3) were interpreted as evidence of thyroid overactivity and methimazole was started. TFT of the pregnant woman continued to be monitored throughout gestation. Postpartum FT4 and FT3 gradually returned to normal. TFT, performed on the daughter’s serum, 3 days after birth, showed the same inconsistency as her mother but without clinical signs of congenital hyperthyroidism. Based on the clinical and laboratory setting, the presence of circulating autoantibodies against T3 and T4 (THAb) was suspected and demonstrated by radioimmunoprecipitation.

Conclusion

Analytical interferences should be supposed when TFT do not fit with the clinical picture and despite their infrequency, THAb must also be considered. To our knowledge, this is the first case describing the passage of THAb to the newborn.

Open access

Hongcheng Wei, Quanquan Guan, Qiurun Yu, Ting Chen, Xu Wang, and Yankai Xia

Introduction

Maternal thyroid function plays a critical role in the normal labor process. Whether maternal thyroid function affects the duration of the first stage of labor is still unknown.

Methods

Maternal serum levels of free thyroxine (FT4), thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) and thyroid peroxidase antibody (TPOAb) were detected in 31,382 pregnant women. A multiple linear regression model was applied to investigate the effect of maternal thyroid function on the duration of the first stage of labor.

Results

FT4 level in the second trimester and in the third trimester was found to be negatively associated with duration of the first stage of labor (β = −1.30 h, 95% CI: −2.28, −0.32, P < 0.01; β = −0.35 h, 95% CI: −0.61, −0.10, P < 0.01). TSH level in the third trimester was found to be positively associated with the duration of the first stage of labor (β = 0.12 h, 95% CI: 0.06, 0.18, P < 0.001). Per unit increase in TPOAb (IU/mL) in the second trimester and in the third trimester was significantly associated with prolonged first stage of labor (β = 0.08 h, 95% CI: 0.01, 0.14, P = 0.02; β = 0.09 h, 95% CI: 0.02, 0.15, P = 0.01). For pregnant women suffering from subclinical hypothyroidism combined without TPOAb, TSH level in the third trimester exhibited a significant positive association with the length of the first stage of labor (β = 2.44 h, 95% CI: 0.03, 4.84, P = 0.04).

Conclusions

These findings suggest that maternal FT4, TSH and TPOAb might be important predictors of the first stage of labor.

Open access

Georgiana Sitoris, Flora Veltri, Malika Ichiche, Pierre Kleynen, Jean-Philippe Praet, Serge Rozenberg, and Kris G Poppe

Objective

Pregnant women with autoimmune (subclinical) hypothyroidism have an increased risk of developing gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM). However, this association remains controversial in euthyroid women with thyroid autoimmunity (TAI). Therefore, the aim of the study was to determine the association between TAI and GDM in euthyroid women in a logistic regression analysis with adjustments for baseline/demographic parameters.

Methods

Cross-sectional study in 1447 euthyroid women who performed their entire clinical/biological workup and oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT) in our center. At median 13 (11–17) weeks of gestation, thyroid-stimulating hormone, free T4, and thyroid peroxidase antibodies (TPOAb) were measured, baseline characteristics were recorded, and an OGTT was performed between 24 and 28 weeks of pregnancy. Exclusion criteria were pre-pregnancy diabetes, assisted pregnancies, and women with (treated) thyroid dysfunction before or after screening. The diagnosis of GDM was based on 2013 World Health Organization criteria, and TAI was defined as TPOAb levels ≥60 kIU/L.

Results

Two hundred eighty women were diagnosed with GDM (19.4%), 26.1% in women with TAI, and 18.9% in women without TAI (P  = 0.096). In the logistic regression analysis, TAI was associated with GDM in women older than 30 years (adjusted odds ratio 1.68 (95% CI, 1.01–2.78); P  = 0.048). Maternal age >30 years, pre-pregnancy BMI ≥30 kg/m2, and other than Caucasian background were also associated with GDM; aOR 1.93 (95% CI, 1.46–2.56); P  < 0.001, 2.03 (95% CI, 1.46–2.81); P  < 0.001 and 1.46 (95% CI, 1.03–2.06); P  = 0.034, respectively.

Conclusions

In older pregnant women, the presence of TAI in euthyroid women was associated with GDM. In line with the literature data, (higher) age and BMI were strongly associated with GDM. Future investigations should focus on treatments that might prevent the development of GDM in euthyroid women with TAI.

Open access

Dominik Spira, Nikolaus Buchmann, Marcus Dörr, Marcello R P Markus, Matthias Nauck, Sabine Schipf, Joachim Spranger, Ilja Demuth, Elisabeth Steinhagen-Thiessen, Henry Völzke, and Till Ittermann

Objective

Thyroid dysfunction is associated with relevant disturbances in glucose metabolism. Moreover, thyroid function undergoes important changes with ageing. The objective of this study was to investigate the association of thyroid function with insulin resistance with particular consideration of possible age-related effect modifications.

Design

A sample of 4193 participants from two independent epidemiological studies, the Study of Health in Pomerania-TREND-0 and the Berlin Aging Study II, was included in this cross-sectional analysis.

Methods

Insulin resistance was estimated by homeostasis model of insulin resistance (HOMA-IR) and the insulin sensitivity index (ISI). Associations of thyroid biomarkers (thyroid-stimulating hormone, free thyroxine, and free triiodothyronine (fT3)) with parameters of glucose metabolism were analysed by regression models adjusted for age, sex, smoking status, and study site.

Results

A higher fT3 was significantly associated with higher fasting glucose and higher fasting and 2-h postload insulin levels, a higher HOMA-IR, and lower ISI. A higher fT3 was also associated with a higher risk for impaired fasting glucose (RR 1.09, 95 CI 1.02; 1.18; P  = 0.017). Many of these associations between thyroid markers and parameters of glucose metabolism were significant in young and middle-aged participants but not in older individuals.

Conclusions

The main finding of this study was a consistent association of fT3 with almost all markers of insulin resistance. However, this effect seems to be wearing off in higher age highlighting a potential age-related modification of the interaction between thyroid function and glucose metabolism. Further studies are needed to clarify causal relationships.

Open access

Francesca Orsolini, Alessandro Prete, Pierpaolo Falcetta, Domenico Canale, Fulvio Basolo, Greta Alì, Francesca Manassero, Paolo Vitti, Rossella Elisei, and Eleonora Molinaro

Introduction

Medullary thyroid cancer (MTC) is a rare endocrine tumor, which can be sporadic or familial, as a component of multiple endocrine neoplasia 2 (MEN2). Overall, 10% of MTC cases have already developed at presentation or will develop metastasis during follow-up. Testicular metastases are exceptional and only one case of unilateral testis involvement by metastatic MTC has been already reported in literature. We described the first known case of asymptomatic bilateral testicular MTC metastases, discovered incidentally at testicular ultrasound (US) performed for unrelated reasons.

Case presentation

A Latin American 32-year-old man with MEN 2A syndrome and metastatic MTC underwent andrological and urological examination due to premature ejaculation. US imaging showed two symmetrical hypoechoic lesions involving both testes. Suspecting a bilateral testicular cancer, the patient underwent excision biopsy of both testicular lesions. Histopathology and immunohistochemical examinations documented metastatic MTC of both testicular lesions.

Conclusion

Beyond its rarity, testis should be considered as a potential metastatic site of MTC, especially in patients with advanced disease.

Established facts

  • Distant metastases are present at the diagnosis in 10–15% of patients with medullary thyroid carcinoma (MTC).

  • Testicular metastases are anecdotal. Only one case of unilateral testis involvement by metastatic MTC has been reported in the literature.

Novel insights

  • Testis should be considered as a possible site of metastases in patients with diffuse metastatic MTC.

  • Testicular ultrasound could be considered as an useful tool for the evaluation and follow-up of metastatic MTC.

Open access

Frederick Keen, Anuja Chalishazar, Kelly Mitchem, Alan Dodd, and Atul Kalhan

Objective

To investigate the final diagnosis and clinical outcome of patients referred to endocrinology in our district general hospital with biochemical isolated central hypothyroidism (CeH), and whether there is an association between this biochemical picture and treatment with antidepressant and antipsychotic medications.

Methods

We performed a retrospective observational study of patients referred to endocrinology with unexplained biochemical isolated CeH over a 5-year period.

Results

Of the 29 patients included in the study, 4 were found to have a partially empty or empty sella and 1 to have a bulky pituitary gland which was deemed to be an incidental radiological finding. No patients had any clinically significant pathology. On reviewing their medications, 18/29 (62%) were found to be on psychotropic medications.

Conclusions

Our study suggests a relationship between patients on psychotropic medications and biochemical isolated CeH, an association only described in a very limited amount of literature prior to this. The mechanism behind this may be suppression of TSH secretion via antagonism of the dopamine-serotoninergic pathway. Determining a correlation between psychotropic medications and isolated CeH could lead to the avoidance of further radiological investigations and unnecessary anxiety for patients. However, a larger observational study is needed to provide further evidence to support/refute our finding.

Open access

Louise Knøsgaard, Stig Andersen, Annebirthe Bo Hansen, Peter Vestergaard, and Stine Linding Andersen

Objective

The assessment of maternal thyroid function in early pregnancy is debated. It is well-established that pregnancy-specific reference ranges preferably should be used. We speculated if the use of repeated blood samples drawn in early pregnancy would influence the classification of maternal thyroid function.

Methods

Pregnant women with repeated early pregnancy blood samples were identified in the North Denmark Region Pregnancy Cohort. Each sample was used for the measurement of TSH, free T4 (fT4), thyroid peroxidase antibodies (TPO-Ab), and thyroglobulin antibodies (Tg-Ab) (ADVIA Centaur XPT, Siemens Healthineers). Method- and pregnancy week-specific reference ranges were used for the classification of maternal thyroid function.

Results

Among 1466 pregnancies included, 89 women had TSH above the upper reference limit in the first sample (median pregnancy week 8) and 44 (49.4%) of these similarly had high TSH in the second sample (median week 10). A total of 47 women had TSH below the lower reference limit in the first sample and 19 (40.4%) of these similarly had low TSH in the second sample. Regarding women classified with isolated changes in fT4 in the first sample, less than 20% were similarly classified as such in the second sample. The percentage agreement between the samples was dependent on the level of TSH in the first sample and the presence of TPO- and Tg-Ab.

Conclusion

In a large cohort of pregnant women, the classification of maternal thyroid function varied considerably with the use of repeated blood samples. Results emphasize a focus on the severity of thyroid function abnormalities in pregnant women.

Open access

Lucie Allard, Jérôme Alexandre Denis, Gaëlle Godiris Petit, Gabrielle Deniziaut, Cécile Ghander, Elise Mathy, Erell Guillerm, Charlotte Lussey-Lepoutre, Laurence Leenhardt, and Camille Buffet

An 87-year-old woman was referred to our department for a 15 cm right-sided cervical tumor with bleeding and skin ulceration, developed on a 6 cm papillary thyroid carcinoma diagnosed two years earlier. Surprisingly, there were no other compressive symptoms. Unexpectedly, but successfully, total thyroidectomy and neck dissection were performed. There were no poorly differentiated or anaplastic components in the final histological analysis. Impressive dehiscence occurred shortly after surgery and was also successfully managed. Our case highlights the benefit of considering surgery in the context of a tertiary care center even for an apparent massive aggressive cervical mass and despite old age.

Open access

Hrvoje Jakovac, Antun Ferenčić, Christophe Stemberger, Bojana Mohar Vitezić, and Dražen Cuculić

The clinical and laboratory findings of subacute thyroiditis have been repeatedly reported as being associated with acute Sars-Cov-2 infection and post-COVID-19 syndrome. The exact mechanisms and histopathological correlations underlying thyroid involvement remained unresolved, but current insights suggest either direct viral damage, systemic inflammatory reaction, or an autoimmune response as possible noxious effectors. Here we present findings of immunohistochemical/immunofluorescence detection of Sars-Cov-2 viral proteins (spike/S and nucleocapside proteins) in relation to histoarchitectonic changes of autoptic thyroid tissue obtained from patient who deceased from COVID-19.