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Hypothyroidism

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ARTICLE DOWNLOAD

Hypothyroidism

5$

Michael T. McDermott 

Hypothyroidism is a common condition in which the thyroid gland provides insufficient amounts of thyroid hormone for the needs of peripheral tissues. The most common cause in adults is chronic lymphocytic thyroiditis (Hashimoto thyroiditis), but there are many other causes. Because most of the clinical features of hypothyroidism are nonspecific, the diagnosis requires laboratory testing. Serum thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) measurement is the best diagnostic test; an elevated TSH level almost always signals primary hypothyroidism. Serum free thyroxine levels may be below the reference range (overt hypothyroidism) or within the reference range (subclinical hypothyroidism). All patients with overt hypothyroidism should be treated, but those with subclinical hypothyroidism do not always benefit from treatment, especially elderly patients and those with baseline TSH levels below 10 mU/L. Oral L-thyroxine is the treatment of choice because of its well-demonstrated efficacy, safety, and ease of use. Therapy goals are symptom relief and maintenance of serum TSH levels within the reference range. Myxedema coma is a life-threatening form of decompensated hypothyroidism that must be treated with aggressive L-thyroxine replacement and other supportive measures in the inpatient setting.

Only units of this product remain
Year 2009
Language English
Format PDF
DOI 10.7326/AITC202007070