Subclinical hypothyroidism in children and adolescents: Is it clinically relevant?

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Although subclinical hypothyroidism (SH) is a common clinical problem, its diagnosis tends to be incidental. According to the definition, it should be asymptomatic, only detectable by screening. The presence or coincidence of any symptoms leads to L-thyroxine treatment. The clinical presentation, especially in younger patients with subclinical hypothyroidism, is still under dispute. Accordingly, the aim of this paper was to review the literature from the past seven years. The literature search identified 1,594 potentially relevant articles, of which 24 met the inclusion criteria. Few studies focus on the symptomatology of subclinical hypothyroidism, and most of them analyzed a small number of subjects. A significant correlation was found by some authors between subclinical hypothyroidism and a higher risk of hypertension, dyslipidemia, and migraine. No evidence of the impact of subclinical hypothyroidism on weight, growth velocity, and puberty was revealed. As the quality of most studies is poor and no definite conclusions can be drawn, randomized, large-scale studies in children and adolescents are warranted to determine the best care for patients with SH.




Gawlik, A., Such, K., Dejner, A., Zachurzok, A., Antosz, A., & Malecka-Tendera, E. (2015). Subclinical hypothyroidism in children and adolescents: Is it clinically relevant? International Journal of Endocrinology. Hindawi Publishing Corporation.

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