Low free triiodothyronine levels predict symptomatic intracranial hemorrhage and worse short-term outcome of thrombolysis in patients with acute ischemia stroke

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The aim of the study was to determine whether thyroid hormones level on admission in patients with ischemic stroke, treated with intravenous recombinant tissue type plasminogen activator (rtPA), was associated with symptomatic intracranial hemorrhage (sICH) and worse outcomes at 3 months.

Patients with acute ischemic stroke (AIS) receiving intravenous rtPA thrombolytic treatment on our stroke unit between January 2015 and June 2016 were included in this study. Serum-free triiodothyronine (fT3), free thyroxine (fT4), total triiodothyronine (tT3), total thyroxine (tT4), and thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) were detected on admission. The endpoints were sICH, and poor functional outcomes at 3 and 6 months.

In all, 159 patients (106 males; mean age 65.36 ± 10.02 years) were included. FT3 was independently associated with sICH (odds ratio [OR] 0.204, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.065–0.642) and poor outcomes at 3 months (OR 0.396, 95% CI 0.180–1.764). The cut-off values of fT3 for sICH was 3.54 pg/mL (sensitivity 83%; specificity 83%; area under the curve 0.88). FT3 values ≤3.54 pg/mL increased risk for sICH by 3.16-fold (95% CI 0.75–1.0) compared with fT3 values >3.54 pg/mL.

Low fT3 levels at admission were independently associated with sICH and worse outcomes at 3 months in AIS patients receiving rtPA thrombolytic therapy.

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