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Nihon Rinsho. 2006 Dec;64(12):2233-6.

[Painless thyroiditis].

[Article in Japanese]

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Department of Health Sciences, School of Medicine, Kyushu University.


Painless thyroiditis is characterized by painless low-uptake thyrotoxicosis (thyrotoxicosis without hyperthyroidism). Destructive damage of the thyroid has been thought to be the mechanism for self-limited thyrotoxicosis. However, hydrolysis of thyroglobulin must be responsible for the release of excessive thyroid hormone. Low-uptake of iodine and excessive release of thyroid hormone suggest the uncoupling of hormone synthesis and hormone secretion in the thyroid gland. Suppressed serum TSH level, various cytokines or growth factors including TGFbeta1, and thyroglobulin itself may be responsible for the suppressed hormone synthesis. The mechanism for persistent hormone release despite suppressed hormone synthesis should be clarified. Quantitative TSH binding inhibitor immunoglobulin assay is helpful for the differential diagnosis of painless thyroiditis and Graves' hyperthyroidism.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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