Efficacy of thyroxine and potassium iodide in benign nodularlesions of the thyroid

Full Text


Aim. To study efficacy of thyroxine (TX) and potassium iodide (PI) in the treatment of benign nodular
thyroid lesions (BNTL).
Material and methods. 118 patients with BNTL (colloid or colloid hypercellular as shown by thin
needle aspiration biopsy, 'cold" or "warm" by scyntigraphy findings) were randomized into two groups:
59 patients were given thyroxin and the other 59 patients PI. The day dose of TX (75-150 meg) was
prescribed according to serum concentration of TTH trying to diminish it to 0.5 mIU/l and lower. PI
dose was 200 meg/day. Most of the patients were treated for 6 months. The response was evaluated
with ultrasound investigation which measured thyroid volume, the size and number of the nodes in it
before and in the end of therapy. The treatment was found effective if the dominant node decreased in
size by 50% and more compared to pretreatment values.
Results. The size of the dominant node decreased by 50% and more in 14 of 59 (23.73%) patients on
TX and in 20 of 59 (33.90%) patients on PI. Both TX and PI prevented growth of the dominant node
size and number of the nodes in approximately 2/3 cases. TX was more effective in young patients
(40.92 ± 3.45 years) vs older ones (47.50 ± 1.46 years, p = 0.047) and patients with colloid nodes.
PI was more effective in patients with shorter node existence (3.93 ± 1.21 and 8.59 ± 1.74 months,
p = 0.02). TX reduced thyroid volume from 20.42 ± 1.69 to 15.18 ± 1.30 ml (p = 0.001), PI -from
18.34 ± 1.57 to 15.36 ± 1.25 ml (p = 0.001).
Conclusion. TX and PI can inhibit or prevent the growth of thyroid benign nodes in approximately 2/3
patients especially in young patients with colloid nodes (TX) and in short existence of the node (PI).


  1. Burch H. В Evaluation and management of solid thyroid nodule. Endocrinol. Metab. Clin. N. Am. 1995; 24 (4): 663-703.
  2. Berghout A. Wiersinga W. M., Smits N. J. et al. Interrelationships between age, thyroid volume, thyroid nodularity, and thyroid function in patients with sporadic nontoxic goiter. Am.J. Med. 1990; 89 (5): 602-608.
  3. Zelmanovitz F., Genro S., Cross J. L. Suppressive therapy with levothyroxine for solitary thyroid nodules: A double-blind controlled clinical study and cumulative meta-analyses. J. Clin. Endocrinol. Metab. 1998; 83 (11): 3881-3885.
  4. Csako G., Byrd D., Wesley R. et al. Assessing the effects of thyroid suppression on benign solitary thyroid nodules. A model for using quantitative research synthesis. Medicine (Baltimore) 2000; 79 (1): 9-27.
  5. Richter В., Neises G., Clar С. Pharmacotherapy for thyroid nodules. A systematic review and meta-analysis. Endocrinol.Metab Clin N. Am. 2002; 31 (3): 699-722.
  6. La Rosa G. L., Lupo L., Giuffrida D. et al. Levothyroxine and potassium iodide are both effective in treating benign solitary solid cold nodules of the thyroid. Ann. Intern. Med. 1995; 122 (1): 1-8.
  7. Хмельницкий О. К. Цитологическая и гистологическая диагностика заболеваний щитовидной железы. СПб: Sotis; 2002.
  8. Gharib H., James M., Charboneau W. et al. Suppressive therapy with levothyroxine for solitary thyroid nodules. A doubleblind controlled clinical study. N. Engl. J. Med. 1987; 317 (2): 70-75.
  9. Papini E., Petrucci L., Guglielmi R. et al. Long-term changes in nodular goiter: A 5-year prospective randomized trial of levothyroxine suppressive therapy for benign cold thyroid nodules.J. Clin. Endocrinol. Metab. 1998; 83 (3): 780-783.
  10. Wemeau J.-L., Caron P., Schvartz С. et al. Effects of thyroidstimulating hormone suppression with levothyroxine in reducing the volume of solitary thyroid nodules and improving extranodular nonpalpable changes: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial by french thyroid research group. Ibid. 2002; 87 (11): 4928-4934.
  11. Gharib H., Mazzaferi E. L. Thyroxine suppressive therapy in patients with nodular thyroid disease. Ann. Intern. Med. 1998; 1 (5): 368-394.
  12. Derwahl M., Broesker M., Kraem Z. Thyrotropin may not be the dominant growth factor in benign and malignant thyroid tumors. J. Clin. Endocrinol. Metab. 1999; 84 (3): 829-834.
  13. Salabe G. B. Pathogenesis of thyroid nodules: histological classification? Biomed. and Pharmacother. 2001; 55 (1): 39-53.
  14. Cooper D. S. Clinical review 66: thyroxine suppressive therapy for benign nodular disease. J. Clin. Endocrinol. Metab. 1995; 80 (2): 331-334.
  15. Кос M., Ersoz H. O., Akpinar I. et al. Effect of low- and highdose levothyroxine on thyroid nodule volume: a crossover placebo-controlled trial. Clin. Endocrinol. 2002; 57 (5): 621 - 628.
  16. Filetti S., Vetri M., Damante G., Bellore A. Thyroid autoregulation: effect of iodine on glucose transport in cultured thyroid cells. Endocrinology 1986; 118 (4): 1395-1400.
  17. Gartner R., Bechtner G. Advances in pathogenesis of goiter. Thyroidology 1990; 3 (2): 93-98.
  18. Lima N., Knobel M., Cavaliere H. et al. Levothyroxine suppressive therapy is partially effective in treating patients with benign solid thyroid nodules and multinodular goiter. Thyroid 1997; 7 (5): 691-697.
  19. Tseleni-Balafouta S., Katsuyami Т., Kitsopanides Т., Koutras D. A. The outcome of benign thyroid nodules correlates with the findings of fine-needle biopsy. Thyroidology 1991; 3 (2): 75-78.
  20. La Rosa G. L., Ippolito A. M., Lupo L. et al. Cold thyroid nodule redution with 1-thyroixine can be predicted by initial nodule volume and cytological characteristics. J. Clin. Endocrinol. Metab. 1996; 81 (12): 4385-4390.
  21. McCowen K. D., Reed J. W., Fariss B. L. The role of thyroid therapy in patients with thyroid cysts. Am. J. Med. 1980; 68 (6): 853-855.



Abstract: 107

Article Metrics

Metrics Loading ...


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Copyright (c) 2021 Grineva Е.N., Malakhova Т.V., Tsoi U.A., Smirnov В.I.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Address of the Editorial Office:

  • Novij Zykovskij proezd, 3, 40, Moscow, 125167

Correspondence address:

  • Novoslobodskaya str 31c4., Moscow, 127005, Russian Federation

Managing Editor:


© 2018-2021 "Consilium Medicum" Publishing house

This website uses cookies

You consent to our cookies if you continue to use our website.

About Cookies