Skip to main content
×
Home
    • Aa
    • Aa

A prospective study of the effects of lithium on thyroid function and on the prevalence of antithyroid antibodies

  • D. H. Myers (a1), R. A. Carter (a1), B. H. Burns (a1), A. Armond (a1), S. B. Hussain (a1) and Vinnie K. Chengapa (a1)...
Synopsis
Synopsis

Tests of thyroid function and pathology were carried out on 133 patients before they were treated with lithium (Li+). Of the 12 patients who subsequently became hypothyroid during treatment with lithium 9 had, before the commencement of treatment, thyroid autoantibodies and/or an exaggerated thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) response to thyrotropin releasing hormone (TRH), whereas 3 patients had neither of these indicators. Lithium administration was accompanied by a rise in thyroid antibody titre in 20 patients but a fall in only 5, a statistically significant difference. Evidence that it may be an immunostimulant is discussed. Li+-induced thyroid failure cannot be accurately predicted, and may occur suddenly. The best minimum safeguard, therefore, is serial thyroxine (T4) (or free T4) estimation, supplemented if equivocal by a free thyroxine index (FTI), a basal TSH and, if doubt remains, by a TRH test.

Copyright
Corresponding author
1 Address for correspondence: Dr D. H. Myers, Royal Shrewsbury Hospital, Shelton, Shrewsbury SY3 8DN.
Linked references
Hide All

This list contains references from the content that can be linked to their source. For a full set of references and notes please see the PDF or HTML where available.

P. C. Baastrup & M. Schou (1967). Lithium as a prophylactic agent. Archives of General Psychiatry 16, 162172.

N. Bagchi , T. R. Brown & R. E. Mack (1978). Studies on the mechanism of inhibition of thyroid function by lithium. Biochimica et Biophysica Acta 542, 163169.

S. C. Berens , R. S. Bernstein , J. Robbins & J. Wolff (1970). Antithyroid effects of lithium. Journal of Clinica Investigation 49, 13571367.

B. E. W. Brownlie , S. T. Chambers , W. A. Sadler & R. A. Donald (1976). Lithium associated thyroid disease – a report of 14 cases of hypothyroidism and 4 cases of thyrotoxicosis. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Medicine 6, 223229.

P. Deniker , A. Eyquem , R. Bernheim , H. Loo & P. Delarue (1978). Thyroid autoantibody levels during lithium therapy. Neuropsychobiology 4, 270275.

C. H. Emerson , W. L. Dyson & R. D. Utiger (1973). Serum thyrotropin and thyroxine concentrations in patients receiving lithium carbonate. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism 36, 338346.

K. Ghose , A. Coppen , A. D. F. Hurdle & I. McIllroy (1977). Antinuclear antibodies, affective disorders and lithium therapy. Pharmakopsychiatry 10, 243245.

U. B. Lauridsen , C. Kirkegaard & J. Nerup (1974). Lithium and the pituitary-thyroid axis in normal subjects. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism 39, 383385.

G. Lindstedt , L. Nilsson , J. Walinder , A. Skott & R. Ohman (1977). On the prevalence, diagnosis and management of lithium-induced hypothyroidism in psychiatric patients. British Journal of Psychiatry 130, 452458.

M. P. Rogers & P. C. Whybrow (1971). Clinical hypothyroidism occurring during lithium treatment: two case histories and a review of thyroid function in 19 patients. Americal Journal of Psychiatry 128, 158163.

R. Rosser (1976). Thyrotoxicosis and lithium. British Journal of Psychiatry 128, 6166.

G. Sedvall , B. Jonsson , U. Pettersson & K. Levin (1968). Effects of lithium salts on plasma protein bound iodine and uptake of I191 in thyroid gland of man and rat. Life Sciences 7, 12571264.

S. W. Spaulding , G. N. Burrow , F. Bermudez & J. M. Himmelhoch (1972) The inhibitory effect of lithium on thyroid hormone release in both euthyroid and thyrotoxic patients. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism 35, 905911.

W. M. G. Tunbridge , M. Brewis , J. M. French , D. Appleton , T. Bird , F. Clark , D. C. Evered , Evans J. Grimley , R. Hall , P. Smith , J. Stephenson & E. Young (1981). Natural history of autoimmune thyroiditis. British Medical Journal 282, 258262.

A. P. Weetman , A. M. McGregor , J. H. Lazarus , Smith B. Rees & R. Hall (1982). The enhancement of immunoglobulin synthesis by human lymphocytes with lithium. Clinical Immunology and Immunopathology 22, 400407.

Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Psychological Medicine
  • ISSN: 0033-2917
  • EISSN: 1469-8978
  • URL: /core/journals/psychological-medicine
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×

Metrics

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 3 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 69 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between September 2016 - 19th September 2017. This data will be updated every 24 hours.