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Br J Cancer. 2013 Oct 29;109(9):2496-501. doi: 10.1038/bjc.2013.597. Epub 2013 Oct 1.

Cancer risk in patients with Hashimoto's thyroiditis: a nationwide cohort study.

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1] Department of Nuclear Medicine and PET Center, Taipei, Taiwan [2] School of Medicine, Fu Jen Catholic University, New Taipei City, Taiwan.



This study examined the risk of cancer in patients with Hashimoto's thyroiditis (HT).


The Taiwanese National Health Insurance Research Database (NHIRD) was used to identify 1521 newly diagnosed HT patients from 1998-2010, and 6084 frequency-matched non-HT patients. The risk of developing cancer for HT patients was measured using the Cox proportional hazard model.


The incidence of developing cancer in the HT cohort was 5.07 per 1000 person-years, which was 1.68-fold higher than that in the comparison cohort (P<0.001). Compared with patients aged 20-34 years, patients in older age groups had a higher risk of developing cancer (35-55 years: hazard ratio (HR)=5.96; >55 years: HR=9.66). After adjusting for sex, age, and comorbidities, the HT cohort had HRs of 4.76 and 11.8 for developing colorectal cancer and thyroid cancer, respectively, compared with non-HT cohort. Furthermore, the HT cohort to non-HT cohort incidence rate ratio (IRR) of thyroid cancer was higher in the first 3 years (48.4, 95% confidence interval (CI)=35.0-66.3), with an adjusted HR of 49.4 (95% CI=6.39-382.4).


Hashimoto's thyroiditis patients have a higher risk of thyroid cancer and colorectal cancer. The thyroid cancer prevention effort should start soon after HT is diagnosed, while being cautious of colorectal cancer increases with time.

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