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Clin Pediatr (Phila). 1993 Jan;32(1):25-9.

Propylthiouracil hepatotoxicity. A review and case presentation.

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Department of Paediatrics, Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, Canada.


Propylthiouracil (PTU) is widely used to treat patients with hyperthyroidism. In rare cases, this drug has been found to have severe toxic effects on the liver. The case of a 14-year-old girl treated with PTU for hyperthyroidism who developed jaundice, severe hepatocellular dysfunction, and hepatomegaly is reported. Her condition gradually deteriorated, and she developed paranoid ideation, profound lethargy, and peripheral edema. After three weeks of prednisone therapy, clinical and laboratory signs of improvement were observed. This patient was one of only five pediatric cases among the 16 reported cases of PTU liver toxicity reported to date. Her history and the fatal outcome in some reported cases demonstrate the high degree of sensitivity required to recognize this potential complication in patients treated with PTU, particularly since its immediate discontinuance and steroid-therapy intervention may lead to recovery.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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