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Perit Dial Int. 2012 Jan-Feb;32(1):86-93. doi: 10.3747/pdi.2010.00202. Epub 2011 Apr 30.

Prevalence of clinical and subclinical thyroid disease in a peritoneal dialysis population.

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  • 1Division of Nephrology, Taipei Veterans General Hospital, Taipei, Taiwan.



We investigated dialysis duration, dose of erythropoietin (EPO), and clinical manifestations in peritoneal dialysis (PD) patients with subclinical hypothyroidism.


This cross-sectional study, performed in 3 centers, assessed 122 adult patients on PD for more than 6 months with regard to demographic data, dialysis duration, thyroid function, biochemical data, EPO dose, and clinical manifestations. Thyroid dysfunction was determined by serum thyroid-stimulating hormone, free thyroxine, total thyroxine, total triiodothyronine, antithyroid peroxidase antibodies, and auto-antibodies against thyroglobulin.


Of the 122 study patients, 98 (80.3%) were assessed as having euthyroidism; 19 (15.6%), subclinical hypothyroidism; and 5 (4.1%), subclinical hyperthyroidism. The proportion of women (74.2% vs. 57.1%, p = 0.038), the mean duration of PD (58.1 months vs. 37.9 months, p = 0.032), and the weighted mean monthly EPO dose (1.22 μg/kg vs. 1.64 μg/kg, p = 0.009) were significantly higher in the subclinical hypothyroidism group than in the euthyroidism group, but the prevalences of coronary artery disease and cerebrovascular disease were not. From the multivariate model, PD duration was more significant than sex as a risk factor for subclinical hypothyroidism (p = 0.0132).


Subclinical hypothyroidism is frequent in PD patients, especially female patients and patients with a longer PD duration. Compared with euthyroid patients, patients with subclinical hyperthyroidism need a higher dose of EPO to maintain a stable hemoglobin level.

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