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Jornal de Pediatria

Print version ISSN 0021-7557On-line version ISSN 1678-4782


DIAS, Vera M. A.; NUNES, Júlio C. R.; ARAUJO, Sabrina S.  and  GOULART, Eugênio M. A.. Etiological assessment of hyperthyrotropinemia in children with Down's syndrome. J. Pediatr. (Rio J.) [online]. 2005, vol.81, n.1, pp.79-84. ISSN 0021-7557.

OBJECTIVE: To study the prevalence of increased TSH level and its probable cause in children with Down's syndrome treated at Policlínica Antônio Cândido. METHODS: The data were colleted using medical records of 169 patients. Of these, 46 patients, whose TSH increased at some time during their follow-up, were re-evaluated. In these patients, TSH, free T4, total T4 and thyroid peroxidase autoantibody (anti-TPO) levels were measured. Thyroid ultrasound, iodine-131 scintigraphy, and a perchlorate discharge test were performed. RESULTS: In 169 children, 86 (50.8%) of whom were male, aged between 1-16 years (median 4 years), 67 (39.6%) presented increased TSH levels. Out of these 67 patients, 46 were prospectively studied. In 31(67.4%) of them serum TSH returned to normal levels; in 11, TSH remained between 5 and 10 µU/ml, three (6.5%) had a TSH level over 10 µU/ml and one (2.2%) had hyperthyroidism. The diagnoses in 34 patients who were fully studied were: goiter in five (14.7%); Hashimoto's thyroiditis in four (5.9%); hypoplasia in three (6.5%) and iodide organification defect in one (2.9%). The increased TSH levels had a statistically positive relationship with anti-TPO (p = 0.02), but not with gender, abnormal ultrasound or scintigraphy findings. TSH levels did not have any relationship with persistent hyperthyrotropinemia. CONCLUSIONS: In patients with Down's syndrome, slightly elevated and transient TSH levels are frequently detected. Positive anti-TPO antibody test is a key factor in the follow-up of these patients because of its potential risk of progression to manifest thyroid disease.

Keywords : Down's syndrome; hyperthyrotropinemia; autoimmune thyroid disease; thyrotropin; hyperthyroidism.

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