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  3. 3. Effects of Interferon Alpha on Thyroid Functions during Treatment of Chronic Hepatitis C
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3. Effects of Interferon Alpha on Thyroid Functions during Treatment of Chronic Hepatitis C

Khadija Mastoor

Asstt. Prof. of Pharmacology, University College of Medicine and Dentistry, The University of Lahore.


Objective: The aim of the study was to assess the incidence, types and risk factors of thyroid dysfunction and thyroid autoimmunity, and to correlate the laboratory parameters with clinical findings. 

Study Design: Prospective clinical trial 

Place and Duration of Study: This study was conducted at General hospital, Lahore from March, 2011 to December 2011. 

Materials and Methods: The study enrolled sixty diagnosed patients of chronic hepatitis C with normal baseline thyroid hormone levels (TSH, FT3, FT4). Anti-thyroid peroxidase antibodies (anti-TPO-Ab) were also assayed. Baseline results were compared with those obtained during and at the end of interferon-alpha (IFN- α) and ribavirin combination therapy. 

Results: Incidence of thyroid dysfunction was 10%.  Six patients (10%) developed thyroid dysfunction. Subclinical hypothyroidism was more common. Four female patients developed hypothyroidism and 2 patients showed hyperthyroidism. The overall incidence of anti thyroid peroxidase antibodies (anti-TPO-Ab) before treatment was 1.7% which became 5% at the end of therapy. 

Conclusion: Female sex and anti-thyroid peroxidase antibodies (anti-TPO-Ab) either present before or during treatment at are at risk of developing  thyroid dysfunction, so all the patients of chronic hepatitis C should be screened for thyroid functions and anti-thyroid peroxidase antibodies (anti-TPO-Ab) before treatment with interferon-alpha (IFN- α) & ribavirin combination therapy, and be monitored during and after treatment. Key Words:Interferon Alpha. Autoimmunity. Anti-thyroid  peroxidase antibodies, HCV..

Citation of article: Mastoor K. Effects of  Interferon Alpha on Thyroid Functions During Treatment of

Chronic Hepatitis C. Med Forum 2015;26(5):9-12.