Relationship Among Pulmonary Hypertension, Autoimmunity, Thyroid Hormones and Dyspnea in Patients With Hyperthyroidism

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Abstract

Objective:

Previous studies have reported conflicting results regarding the mechanisms underlying the pathophysiology of pulmonary hypertension (PHT) in patients with hyperthyroidism. Therefore, in this study, we investigated the association between PHT and thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) receptor antibody, thyroid peroxidase antibody, thyroglobulin antibody, TSH, fT3, fT4 and dyspnea during daily activities in a large population of patients with hyperthyroidism.

Methods:

A total of 129 consecutive patients with hyperthyroidism, 37 with hypothyroidism and 38 euthyroid controls were enrolled in this study. The modified medical research council scale was used for the assessment of dyspnea in daily activities. All the patients and euthyroid controls underwent transthoracic echocardiography for the assessment of PHT.

Results:

Mild PHT was present in 35%, 36%, 13.5% and 5% of the patients with Graves' disease, toxic multinodular goiter, hypothyroidism and euthyroid controls, respectively. Pulmonary vascular resistance (PVR) was higher in hyperthyroid patients with PHT than in those without PHT. Moreover, a significant positive correlation was found between modified medical research council scale and pulmonary artery systolic pressure as well as PVR in patients with hyperthyroidism. No association was found between PHT and serum TSH receptor antibody, thyroid peroxidase antibody, thyroglobulin antibody, TSH, fT3 and fT4 levels.

Conclusions:

Mild PHT is present in a significant proportion of patients with hyperthyroidism, regardless of etiology. PVR appears to be the main cause of PHT in patients with hyperthyroidism, and neither autoimmunity nor thyroid hormones are associated with PHT in these patients. Mild dyspnea during daily activities in patients with hyperthyroidism may be related to PHT; however, severe dyspnea requires further evaluation.

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