April 1973

Triglyceride Abnormality in Infantile Hypothyroidism

Author Affiliations

From the departments of pediatrics and medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine, and the Veterans Administration Hospital, Seattle. Dr. Baum is currently with the Department of Pediatrics, Stanford University Medical School, Stanford, Calif.

Am J Dis Child. 1973;125(4):612-613. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1973.04160040106023

Triglyceride metabolism was studied in a 14-month-old cretin boy. Prior to therapy, the child was found to have hypertriglyceridemia, hypercholesterolemia, and increased plasma pre-beta lipoproteins. An abnormality in lipoprotein lipase was suggested by low postheparin lipase activity (PHLA) in the child's plasma.

With 13 weeks of therapy, the triglyceride level fell and the lipoprotein distribution and PHLA in fasting plasma became normal. By 20 weeks, all lipid measures were normal. After only five weeks of thyroid replacement and improved oral intake, a paradoxical increase in plasma triglyceride and appearance of chylomicrons occurred despite a marked increase in PHLA.