Health status in patients with sub-clinical hypothyroidism

Department of Diabetes and Endocrinology, Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Gateshead NE9 6SX, UK.
European Journal of Endocrinology (Impact Factor: 3.69). 06/2005; 152(5):713-7. DOI: 10.1530/eje.1.01907
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Sub-clinical hypothyroidism (SCH) is a common disorder. People with this condition may have symptoms which could affect their perception of health. Therefore, the perceived health status of people with SCH was assessed and compared with population-matched norms.
A prospective cross-sectional survey.
Seventy-one adults with SCH, age range 18-64 years were studied. Perceived health status was measured by the Short Form-36 (SF-36) version 2 questionaire, which has been validated in a UK population setting. The SF-36 has eight scales measuring physical functioning, role physical, bodily pain, general health, vitality, social functioning, role emotional and mental health. Their SF-36 scores were compared with UK normative data after matching for age and sex and are reported as z-scores.
Scores of all eight SF-36 scales were significantly lower in people with SCH compared with the normative population. A negative score (compared with zero of the normative population) indicates worse health status. The most significantly impaired aspects of health status were vitality and role limitations due to physical problems (role physical scale) with z-scores (95% confidence intervals) of -1.01 (-0.74 to -1.29) and -0.73 (-0.43 to -1.04) respectively. Thyroid autoimmunity did not influence the results.
Perceived health status is significantly impaired in people with SCH when compared with UK normative population scores. This needs to be taken into consideration by clinicians when managing patients with this disease.

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