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Endocr Relat Cancer. 2005 Dec;12(4):973-81.

Lack of deleterious effect on bone mineral density of long-term thyroxine suppressive therapy for differentiated thyroid carcinoma.

Author information

1
Department of Endocrinology and Nutrition, Germans Trias i Pujol Hospital, Barcelona, Spain. jreverter@comb.es

Abstract

The effect of subclinical hyperthyroidism on bone mineral density is controversial and could be significant in patients with differentiated thyroid carcinoma who receive suppressive doses of levothyroxine (LT4). To ascertain whether prolonged treatment with LT4 to suppress thyrotropin had a deleterious effect on bone mineral density and/or calcium metabolism in patients thyroidectomized for differentiated thyroid cancer we have performed a cross-sectional study in a group of 88 women (mean +/- SD age: 51 +/- 12 years) treated with LT4 after near-total thyroidectomy and in a control group of 88 healthy women (51 +/- 11 years) matched for body mass index and menopausal status. We determined calcium metabolism parameters, bone turnover marker N-telopeptide and bone mass density by dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry. No differences were found between patients and controls in calcium metabolism parameters or N-telopeptide except for PTH, which was significantly increased in controls. No differences were found between groups in bone mineral density in femoral neck (0.971 +/- 0.148 gr/cm(2) vs 0.956 +/- 0.130 gr/cm(2) in patients and controls respectively, P = 0.5). In lumbar spine, bone mineral density values were lower in controls than in patients (1.058 +/- 0.329 gr/cm(2) vs 1.155 +/- 0.224 gr/cm(2) respectively, P < 0.05). When premenopausal (n = 44) and postmenopausal (n = 44) patients were compared with their respective controls, bone mineral density was similar both in femoral neck and lumbar spine. The proportion of women with normal bone mass density, osteopenia and osteoporosis in patient and control groups was similar in pre- and postmenopausal women. In conclusion, long-term suppressive LT4 treatment does not appear to affect skeletal integrity in women with differentiated thyroid carcinoma.

PMID:
16322336
DOI:
10.1677/erc.1.01072
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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