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How safe is radioactive iodine therapy for the treatment of hyperthyroidism?

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How safe is radioactive iodine therapy for the treatment of hyperthyroidism?

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There are only a few population studies of the long-term effects of radioactive iodine therapy and these are effectively confined to adults. As such the role that this modality should play in the management of hyperthyroidism in children is unclear. A recent publication sheds some light on mortality in patients with this condition under the age of 50 years (1). This large cohort study of 7209 subjects treated with 105,028 person-years follow-up revealed a slight excess of deaths from all causes with a standardised mortality ratio (SMR) of 1.1. This compares with similar values from USA (SMR 1.3) (2) and Sweden (SMR women 1.5; men 1.3) (3). In the under 50 age group deaths were increased in the first year of therapy from endocrine (effectively thyroid) (SMR 2.5 95%CI 1.4 – 4.1) disease. Cardiovascular disease mortality was not increased (SMR 1.2 95%CI 0.9 – 1.4). Treating hyperthyroidism in the presence of eye disease Eye disease precedes hyperthyroidism in 20%, appears at the same time

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