Thyroid Disease (cont.)

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What is the outlook for someone with a thyroid disease?

Outcomes vary according to the specific disease.

  • Some thyroid diseases (such as postpartum thyroiditis) can be self-limited.
  • Other diseases can be easily treated with long-term, daily thyroid hormone replacement (as in Hashimoto's hypothyroidism).
  • For a compressive goiter, symptoms of compression can be completely cured with surgery.
  • Depending on the type of thyroid cancer, the extent of disease and the underlying health of the patient, the cancer may be completely curable, or may require a prolonged course of treatment with a poor outcome.
  • Graves' disease in patients under age 18 years may enter remission within 5 years of starting treatment with antithyroid hormone medication. Often these patients relapse, so approximately 20% of those with pediatric Graves' disease remain in remission within 5 years of diagnosis, allowing antithyroid medication to be discontinued.

REFERENCES:

UpToDate. Diagnosis of hyperthyroidism.

UpToDate. Iodine in the treatment of hyperthyroidism.

UpToDate. Nonthyroid surgery in the patient with thyroid disease.

UpToDate. Treatment of Graves' hyperthyroidism.

UpToDate. Treatment of toxic adenoma and toxic multinodular goiter.

UpToDate. Clinical manifestations of hypothyroidism.

UpToDate. Treatment of hypothyroidism.

UpToDate. Overview of the management of differentiated thyroid cancer.

UpToDate. Thyroid biopsy.

Previous contributing author and editor: and William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR


Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 8/7/2013

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