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Hypothyreosis and Pernicious Anemia

german translation / full article

Simon Kostner

Question

For a patient suffering from autoimmune hypothyreosis the family practitioner is suggested to make regular controls of a full blood count because of the association of this disease with pernicious anemia. How often are both diseases associated with each other? Are there recommendations concerning that problem?

Answer

In the publications from the eighties and nineties of the last century this association is often mentioned or illustrated in case histories. Today only less than a dozen small and not representative studies can be found. The higher than expected frequency of finding antibodies against the respective other disease makes it plausible that there is indeed such an association. On this background three-yearly controls of vitamin B12 and a full blood count looking for macrocytemia in patients having an autoimmune thyreoditis(including also Basedow) seem to be indicated. Half-yearly controls make less sense because the store for Vitamin B12 holds for 3 to 5 years. Making an early diagnosis of B12-deficiency because of possible neurological manifestations makes this test the more important one. There are no guideline recommendations concerning this problem.


(State: 11.05.2015)

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