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January 8, 1973

Possible Synergism Between Iodine And Lithium Carbonate

JAMA. 1973;223(2):192-193. doi:10.1001/jama.1973.03220020058024

To the Editor.—  In reference to the article in The Journal by Dr. Luby and colleagues (218:1298, 1971) and the comments by Dr. Wiener (220:587, 1972) and Dr. Whybrow (221:506, 1972) concerning the possible contributive effect of iodide to the antithyroid action of lithium carbonate, we want to mention that one of the first published cases of myxedema attributed to excessive iodide administration might have been a "lithium plus iodide hypothyroidism."In 1953, Morgans and Trotter published "two cases of myxedema attributed to iodide administration." One of the patients was a 66-year-old man who was myxedematous on admission with a basal metabolic rate (BMR) of 85% and a plasma cholesterol level of 370 mg/100 ml. Measurements of radioactive iodine neck to thigh ratios four days and ten days after admission showed a shift from normal to thyrotoxic values. Repeated measurements 31 and 76 days after admission demonstrated that the thyroid