Thyroid disease risk higher in vitiligo patients

August 29, 2012

The prevalence and risk of thyroid diseases are significantly higher among patients with vitiligo compared to those without the condition, according to a recently published study.

Amsterdam - The prevalence and risk of thyroid diseases are significantly higher among patients with vitiligo compared to those without the condition, according to a recently published study.

Investigators from the University of Amsterdam conducted a systematic literature review and meta-analysis to examine the prevalence of thyroid diseases among patients with vitiligo.

After reviewing 48 articles, published between 1968 and 2011, researchers found that the mean prevalence of thyroid disease, autoimmune thyroid disease, and presence of thyroid specific autoantibodies was 15.1, 14.3, and 20.8 percent, respectively, among patients with vitiligo.

“This systematic review shows evidence of an increased prevalence and an increased risk of (autoimmune) thyroid diseases in vitiligo patients compared to non-vitiligo patients,” the study authors wrote. “This risk seems to increase with age, Clinicians should be aware of the increased risk of thyroid disease in vitiligo patients and should be attentive (to) symptoms of thyroid disease.”

The study was published online Aug. 3 in the British Journal of Dermatology.

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