Background: Ukraine does not yet have a national program for control of iodine deficiency and there are no recent data on the severity of the iodine deficiency disorders (IDD) in the country.
Objective: The aim of the present study was to assess current IDD status in eastern Ukraine.
Design: We conducted school-based 30-cluster survey in children 6-11-year-old in urban and rural areas. We measured urinary iodine concentration (UI) and iodine content of salt by rapid test kits. Goiter was graded by palpation and thyroid volume determined by ultrasound. We measured hemoglobin (all children), serum ferritin, serum transferrin receptor, thyrotropin, thyroxine in children with goiter and anemia.
Results: Children were sampled at 20 urban and 10 rural primary schools. In the 20 urban schools, the median UI was 89 μg/l, 36% of household salt samples were iodized (adequate levels), the goiter prevalence was 32%. In the rural schools, the median UI was 76 μg/l, the goiter prevalence was 18 and 12% household salt samples were adequately iodized. Among children in the rural schools anemia prevalence was 12%, in urban schools 36%.
Conclusions: In eastern Ukraine, school children in all areas are mildly iodine deficient. But the prevalence of IDD is higher in children in urban school. Coexisting deficiencies of iodine and iron and severe environmental conditions at the industrial cities can impair thyroid function.
03 - 07 May 2008
European Society of Endocrinology