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Hormone Therapy Not Beneficial in Subclinical Hypothyroidism

No benefit regarding quality of life or thyroid-related symptoms found for thyroid hormone therapy

thyroid anatomy

FRIDAY, Oct. 12, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Thyroid hormone therapy is not associated with improvements in general quality of life or thyroid-related symptoms in non-pregnant adults with subclinical hypothyroidism, according to a review published in the Oct. 2 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Martin Feller, M.D., from the University of Bern in Switzerland, and colleagues conducted a systematic literature review to identify randomized clinical trials that compared thyroid hormone therapy to placebo or no therapy in non-pregnant adults with subclinical hypothyroidism. Their analysis included 21 studies with 2,192 adults.

The researchers found that after treatment (range, three to 18 months), thyroid hormone therapy was associated with a reduction in the mean thyrotropin value to the normal reference range versus placebo, but it was not associated with benefit regarding general quality of life or thyroid-related symptoms. Included studies had a low risk of bias and moderate- to high-quality evidence.

"These findings do not support the routine use of thyroid hormone therapy in adults with subclinical hypothyroidism," the authors write.

One author disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical industry.

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