July 31, 1967

The Treatment of Hyperthyroidism

Author Affiliations


JAMA. 1967;201(5):330. doi:10.1001/jama.1967.03130050064025

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To the Editor:—  The editorial in The Journal (200:162, 1967) entitled "Treatment of Hyperthyroidism" displays a regrettable lack of objectivity. All present methods of treatment for hyperthyroidism possess certain disadvantages, and the cumulative long-term incidence of hypothyroidism after treatment with radioactive iodine is certainly among them. However, the magnitude of this disadvantage is moot. Total thyroid ablation by radiation or surgery has long been employed in the treatment of certain cardiac disorders, rarely in severe diabetes and blood dyscrasias, and more recently in progressive ophthalmopathy complicating Graves' disease. Accidental post-therapeutic myxedema is amenable to complete control by adequate doses of thyroid hormone, the principal risks appearing consequent to the patient's lapse from supervision and treatment.While emphasizing the 70% estimated cumulative incidence of hypothyroidism ten years after radioactive iodine treatment, cited by Nofal et al, the editorial fails to mention other data in the same article. These include the