An association between autoimmune thyroiditis and premature ovarian failure: a cross-sectional study
Serap Soytac Inancli, Mutlucan Kurt, Husniye Baser, Fatma Saglam, Reyhan Ersoy & Bekir Cakir
Introduction: Premature ovarian failure is cessation of ovarian function before the expected age, which is usually accepted to be 40. Autoimmune diseases are a frequently seen group of disorders causing premature ovarian failure. In this study, we aimed to evaluate the frequency of autoimmune thyroiditis in patients with premature ovarian failure.
Material and method: Patients who admitted to our thyroid out patient clinic were included to our study. The patients were divided in to two groups according to their menopause age. Group 1 were patients whose menopause age was before 40, and Group 2 were patients whose menapause age was after 40. The patients were evaluated according to their thyroid function tests (fT3, fT4, TSH), thyroid autoantibodies (AntiTPO Ab, AntiTg Ab) and thyroid ultrasonography. The patients were diagnosed as autoimmune thyroiditis when thyroid markers supported chronic thyroiditis on ultrasonography.
Results: Forty-six of 80 patients were included in to Group 1, and 34 were included into Group 2. In Group 1 mean age was 42.4±7.6 years, mean menopause age was 34.5±5.1 years. In Group 2 mean age was 48.5±5.4 years, mean menopause age was 46.3±5.5 years. There was a statistically significant difference in age and menopause age between two groups (P<0.001). 72.7% of the patients in Group 1 and 35.3% of the patients in Group 2 had autoimmune thyroiditis. Our study has shown that autoimmune thyroiditis is statistically more common in patients who enter menopause before the age of 40 then patients who enter menopause after the age of 40 (P=0.002). The limitation of our study is that the patients were selected from our thyroid out patient clinic.
Conclusion: Autoimmunity is one of the most common causes of premature ovarian failure. We suggest that patients who enter menopause before the age of 40 should be investigated for autoimmune thyroiditis.