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Thyroid Status Linked to Impaired HRQoL in Dialysis Patients

FRIDAY, July 14, 2017 -- For hemodialysis patients, thyroid status is associated with impaired health-related quality of life (HRQoL), according to a study published online July 13 in the Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology.

Connie M. Rhee, M.D., from the University of California Irvine, and colleagues examined the correlation of thyroid status, defined by serum thyrotropin (TSH), with HRQoL and depressive symptoms over time in a cohort of 450 hemodialysis patients from 17 outpatient dialysis facilities. Participants completed protocolized TSH testing, Short-Form 36 (SF-36) surveys, and Beck Depression Inventory-II questionnaires.

The researchers observed a correlation for the highest baseline TSH tertile with a 5-point lower SF-36 domain score for energy/fatigue (P = 0.04), and a correlation for the highest time-dependent tertile with a 5-point lower physical function score (P = 0.03). Higher baseline TSH levels correlated with lower role limitations due to physical health, energy/fatigue, and pain scores (P = 0.04, 0.03, and 0.002, respectively), which was equivalent to scores that were 5, 3, and 5 points lower for every one standard deviation (SD) higher TSH. There was a correlation seen for higher time-dependent TSH levels with lower role limitations due to physical health scores (P = 0.03), which was equivalent to a decrease of 3 points for every one SD higher TSH.

"Studies are needed to determine if thyroid-modulating therapy improves the HRQoL of hemodialysis patients with thyroid dysfunction," the authors write.

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Posted: July 2017