Teenagers with depression at increased risk for thyroid diseases

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March 29, 2021 1 min read ADD SUBJECT

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Assessment of thyroid function may be warranted among teenagers with depression because of their increased danger for subclinical hypothyroidism and thyroid autoimmunity, according to a research study published in Journal of Scientific Psychiatry.

“Thyroid dysfunction and thyroid autoimmunity are understood to affect psychological health in adults,” Raphael Hirtz, MD, PhD, of the department of pediatrics II at the University Healthcare Facility Essen in Germany, and colleagues wrote. “A recent large-scale meta-analysis verified a 3.3-fold increased threat for depression in hypothyroidism and autoimmune thyroiditis. On the other hand, info on thyroid dysfunction in children and teenagers with depression is scarce, and studies are challenging to interpret due to conflicting findings, little sample size and sample heterogeneity.”

rates of subclinical hypothyroidism among adolescents Recommendation: Hirtz R, et al.

J Clin Psychiatry. 2021; doi:10.4088/ JCP.20 m13511. To resolve this research gap, the investigators examined data on thyroid function specifications, consisting of thyrotropin, totally free thyroxine and thyroid peroxidase antibodies, as well as the frequency of thyroid dysfunction and autoimmunity, among 360 adolescents aged 11 to 19 years with at least mild anxiety according to a score of 13 or greater on the Beck Anxiety Inventory-II (BDI-II). They also examined information from a representative reference mate whose individuals did not have evidence of impaired psychological health according to results of a nationwide study.

Findings demonstrated increased rates of thyroid peroxidase antibody positivity amongst adolescents with anxiety vs. those in the recommendation mate, with 5.8% as positive in the former and 3.1% in the latter. Those with anxiety also had higher rates of subclinical hypothyroidism (9.1%) than those in the recommendation friend (2.1%); nevertheless, no other types of thyroid dysfunction were greater amongst those with depression. Hirtz and colleagues observed no considerable association between thyroid function parameters and BDI-II scores evaluated through multiple regression that represented relevant covariates. The researchers verified positive results in a subsample of 284 clients with a confirmed anxiety diagnosis.

“Longitudinal research studies are needed to comprehend the role and nature of thyroid dysfunction and autoimmunity in adolescent anxiety,” Hirtz and associates composed. “To further explore the meaning of systemic autoimmunity in depressed teenagers with thyroid autoimmunity, future research must likewise address the frequency of antibodies targeting the [central nerve system] as well as the effect of immunosuppressive treatment on (treatment-resistant) anxiety in depressed adolescents with [main nerve system] autoimmunity, as this approach has shown effective in clients impacted by Hashimoto encephalopathy and may supply causal proof of the meaning of CNS-Abs in depression.”

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