Vogelius et al performed a meta-analysis to identify risk factors for radiation-induced hypothyroidism. These can help to identify a patient who may benefit from closer monitoring of thyroid function. The authors are from the University of Copenhagen and University of Wisconsin.


Patient selection: external beam irradiation to the cervical region


Factors affecting the risk prediction:

(1) duration and intensity of follow-up

(2) method of detecting hypothyroidism


Risk factors for hypothyroidism:

(1) female gender

(2) surgery to thyroid gland

(3) other surgery to the neck

(4) Caucasian race (compared to African American)

(5) higher radiation dose to the neck (high risk if >= 45 Gy)


Although not mentioned in the study, pre-existing impaired thyroid function could be an additional risk factor.


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