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Original Article

J Liaquat Uni Med Health Sci. 2008; 7(2): 83-86

Sick Euthyroid Syndrome: Thyroid Function Abnormalities in Patients with Non-Thyroid Illness

Sabeen Aatif, Rana Qamar, Iftekhar Ahmed and Khalid Imran.

INTRODUCTION: Non-thyroid illness is accompanied with many severe illnesses like septicemia,
renal failure, cirrhosis of liver, Pulmonary Tuberculosis, chronic heart failure, after major
surgical trauma, etc. This study was undertaken on first four illnesses,which are common medical
problems, and admitted in medical wards in advanced stages. This is to bring awareness
amongst clinicians while interpreting TFT abnormalities in severe illnesses.
OBJECTIVE: To assess the thyroid function status in patients with severe illnesses,which are
commonly encountered in Medical wards. Interpretation of Thyroid hormones should be cautiously
made in such conditions..
DESIGN: Descriptive/Observational, Non-interventional study
PLACE AND DURATION OF STUDY: Medical unit III, Civil Hospital, Karachi. From 1st March 2001
to 1st April 2002. The cases were recorded as and when received, keeping exclusion criteria as
mentioned below.
MATERIAL AND METHODS: 50 adult patients of either sex, admitted in the hospital for nonthyroidal
illness were tested for the thyroid function status by means of T3, T4 and TSH analysis.
Results were evaluated for the presence of Sick Euthyroid Syndrome.
RESULTS: Of the 50 patients, 24 (48%) had a low T3, low T4 or both but with normal TSH.
CONCLUSION: Sick Euthyroid Syndrome should be considered while managing the patients
with serious and debilitating illnesses.

Key words: Sick Euthyroid Syndrome, T3, T4, TSH.

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