Achalasia and thyroid disease

Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Poursina Hakim Research Institution, Isfahan, Iran.
World Journal of Gastroenterology (Impact Factor: 2.37). 02/2007; 13(4):594-9.
Source: PubMed


To investigate some possible etiologies of achalasia by screening patients with achalasia for some autoimmune diseases such as thyroid disease.
We examined 30 known cases of achalasia (20 females, 10 males). Their age ranged 15-70 years. All of them were referred to our institute for treatment. Their sera were evaluated to detect some possible associations with rheumatoid disease, thyroid disease, inflammatory process, anemia, etc.
Seven out of 30 patients (23%) had thyroid disease including four patients with hypothyroidism (13.3%), two patients with hyperthyroidism (6.6%), and one had only thyroid nodule but was in euthyroid state (3.3%). Two of these hypothyroid patients had no related clinical symptoms (subclinical) and two had clinical manifestations of hypothyroidism. There were no correlations between the intensity of thyroid diseases and the severity of achalasia symptoms.
The etiology of achalasia is unknown although autoimmunity has been implicated and is supported by several studies. Thyroid disease presents concomitantly with achalasia in about one fourth of our patients who may have a common etiology.

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