Thyroid disorders with no symptoms are common to Filipino adults, according to survey

Friday, July 06, 2012 12:00 AM    Views : 4051by:Richmond Q. Acosta

A recent survey, supported by the Philippine Society of Endocrinology and Metabolism (PSEM) and the Philippine Council for Health and Research Development of the Department of Science and Technology (PCHRD–DOST), entitled, Philippine Thyroid Disorder Prevalence Survey (PhilTiDeS): Prevalence of Thyroid Disorders among Adults in the Philippines, revealed that more Filipino adults are affected with subclinical (no symptoms) forms of thyroid disorders than those which have obvious symptoms.

PhilTideS was the first study done to comprehensively survey the prevalence of all thyroid disorders in the Philippines. While there were studies about the occurrence of goiter in the Philippines during the late 1980's and early 1990's, PhilTides cover other types of thyroid disorders which allow researchers to draw a reliable picture on the extensiveness of thyroid disorders among Filipinos. Researchers explained, "PhilTideS is the first national survey in the Philippines on the prevalence of thyroid disorders based on thyroid function tests, together with the presence of thyrtoid enlargement based on physical examination and iodine nutrition status of adult non-pregnant population."

Among the 5,000 people recruited in the study, 4,897 qualified for the structured interview and physical assessment of the thyroid. After which, the respondents' blood samples were taken and tested for thyroid disorders.

Upon analysis of data, it was found out that subclinical thyroid disorders are the more common case of the condition found in the Philippines' adult population. PhilTideS researchers emphasized the importance of addressing not only the symptomatic thyroid disorders, but also the more treacherous subclinical types. They warned, "Subclinical hypothyroidism has been associated with dyslipedemia (abnormal amount of lipids in the blood) that can lead to cardiovascular disease. Detection and correction can correct its consequences and improve health."

With the PhilTideS results already out, the researchers hope that these would help better address issues in thyroid health in the Philippines. They said, "These results put into focus the importance of not just the overt conditions but also the subclinical thyroid disorders," and added, "Knowledge of this data should be able to help our policy makers , health insurance policy makers and individual health practitioners to make the necessary steps to address the thyroid dysfunction."



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