Association of thyroid hormone therapy with quality of life and thyroid-related symptoms for subclinical hypothyroidism

Researchers questioned whether thyroid hormone therapy would benefit people with subclinical hypothyroidism, which is defined as elevated thyrotropin in combination with normal-range free thyroxine. The condition is commonplace, but no standard exists for managing it.

Researchers questioned whether thyroid hormone therapy would benefit people with subclinical hypothyroidism, which is defined as elevated thyrotropin in combination with normal-range free thyroxine. The condition is commonplace, but no standard exists for managing it. The investigators evaluated 21 relevant randomized clinical trials with nearly 2,200 participants for evidence of improved general quality of life or improved thyroid-related symptoms after 3 months or more of thyroid hormone therapy. The results indicated that neither of these goals were achieved, although the strategy did reduce the mean thyrotropin value down into the normal reference range compared with placebo. Based on this meta-analysis and systematic review, there is no solid basis for routine use of thyroid hormone therapy in nonpregnant adults with subclinical hypothyroidism, according to the authors.