ISSN 1470-3947 (print) | ISSN 1479-6848 (online)

Endocrine Abstracts (2008) 16 P805

High prevalence of pathologic TSH values in patients admitted to a clinic of general internal medicine

Walter Reinhardt1, Oliver Gross2 & Friedrich Jockenhoevel2


1Endocrine Outpatient Clinic and Evk Hospital, Herne, Germany; 2Evangelisches Krankenhaus, Herne, Germany.


Currently there are only rare data on the prevalence of thyroid dysfunction in hospitalized patients. Therefore, we prospectively measured TSH values in patients admitted to a clinic of general internal medicine in an area of moderate iodine deficiency.

In 1011 patients (mean age 66.2 years; median 72 years) TSH was consecutively evaluated.

The mean TSH was 1.74 μU/ml (range 0.00–93.3); median 1.1 μU/ml.

In 732 patients (74.4%) TSH was within the normal range (0.35–2.8 μU/ml) 120 patients (11.9%) had TSH levels above 2.8 μU/ml.

About 139 patients (13.7%) had TSH levels below 0.35 μU/ml. Among those 139 patients 51 patients had TSH values below 0.1 μU/ml.

There was a negative correlation of age and TSH (P<0.05).

We found pathologic TSH values in 25% of patients admitted to a clinic of general internal medicine. Whether these alterations are related to true thyroid dysfunction or are influenced by the underlying illness needs further evaluation.

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