Endocrine Abstracts (2006) 11 P923

The risk of hypercholesterolemia in patients with subclinical hypothyroidism

LJ Marina, Z Penezic, S Vujovic, M Stojanovic, M Ivovic & M Drezgic


Institute of Endocrinology, CCS, Belgrade, Yugoslavia.


Subclinical hypothyroidism is defined as a biochemical abnormality characterized by an elevated serum level of sTSH with normal thyroid hormones (FT4) and no clinical symptoms. The objective of this study was to asses whether patients with subclinical hypothyroidism have a risk of hypercholesterolemia. We have evaluated 37 adults (34 female and 3 male), mean age 49.20±9.65 years, with laboratory confirmed subclinical hypothyroidism, sTSH value above of 4.5 mU/L and normal thyroxin. We divided them in two groups. 1st group: 22 persons (20 female and 2 male), mean age 48.04±9.82, who did not previously have a diagnosis of hypothyroidism. 2nd group: 15 persons (14 female and 1 male), mean age 51.00±9.49 years, who were taking thyroid replacement medication. None of them had history of coronary heart disease, signs of liver and renal dysfunction or were previously treated with lipid lowering drugs. We determined serum cholesterol level in every person and a level above 5.12 mmol/L was considered elevated. Statistical analysis was done by Spearman correlation and Mann-Whitney U test. The results showed that 75.67% of examined persons with subcinical hypothyroidism had elevated serum cholesterol, mean 6.75±1.11 mmol/L. In the first group 76.20% had elevated cholesterol, mean 6.66±1.13 mmol/L, in the second 85.71%, mean 6.87±1.13 mmol/L. There was no significant difference (P>0.05) among the cholesterol levels between the groups and there was no significant correlation between the level of sTSH and cholesterol level in the whole group. The percentage of examined persons with subclinical hypothyroidism and hypercholesterolemia is significantly higher then the percentage of ones with normal cholesterol levels. Therefore, subclinical hypothyroidism seems to be associated with high cholesterol levels. We haven’t found any correlation with sTSH level and a degree of cholesterol increase.

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