ESPE Abstracts (2016) 86 P-P2-977

Very Early Onset of Autoimmune Thyroiditis in a Toddler with Multi-organ Involvement

Pierluigi Marzuillo, Anna Grandone, Anna Di Sessa, Claudia Sansò, Elena De Nitto, Laura Ruggiero, Carlo Capristo, Emanuele Miraglia del Giudice & Laura Perrone


Department of Woman, Child and General and Specialized Surgery, Seconda Univesità degli Studi di Napoli, Naples, Italy


Background: In infants under 3 years of age acquired primary hypothyroidism caused by autoimmune thyroiditis is very rare. Hypothyroidism can manifest with different signs and symptoms and has a wide range of presentations from subclinical hypothyroidism to overt form.

Objective and hypotheses: We describe a child with an unusual hypothyroidism presentation characterized by multi-organ involvement and related to acquired autoimmune thyroiditis during a very early period of life.

Method: A 22-month-old white male patient with normal neonatal screening presented with a 6-month history of asthenia and cutaneous pallor. At general clinical and biochemical exams he showed weight gain, statural growth deceleration, poor movements, sleepy expression, instability while walking, myxoedema, bradycardia, open anterior fontanelle, changes in the face habitus, macrocytic anaemia, ascites, and high CPK, creatinine and cholesterol levels.

Results: TSH, free thyroxine (fT4), free triiodothyronin (fT3) were >200 μIU/ml, 1.39 and 0.5 pg/ml, respectively. The levels of thyroid peroxidase antibodies and thyroglobulin antibodies were high (2017 and 1743 IU/l, respectively); sonographic thyroidal evaluation demonstrated normal anatomy with non-homogeneous echotexture. Because the neonatal screening for congenital hypothyroidism was normal, a diagnosis of hypothyroidism related to autoimmune thyroiditis was determined. The thyroxin replacement therapy normalized all the clinical and biochemical abnormalities.

Conclusion: Our case could give useful learning points: i) hypothyroidism can have a misleading and multi-face clinical presentation; ii) anemia, rhabdomyolysis and high creatinine levels should always include the hypothyroidism in the differential diagnosis; iii) thyroxine replacement therapy is able to revert all the clinical manifestations related to the hypothyroidism; iv) evaluating the patient’s previous pictures could play an important role in resolving a diagnostic conundrum.

Article tools

My recent searches

No recent searches.