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Altered thyroid function in small for gestational age newborns: study based on screening test for congenital hypothyroidism

Franco BAGNOLI, Laura FARMESCHI, Luana PERUZZI, Antonietta MUSARÃ', Patrizia PAFFETTI, Silvia BADII, Martina CASUCCI, Letizia PASQUI, Francesca LACOPONI
3.958 852


Background and Aims: Unequivocal data is not yet available on alterations in plasma concentrations of thyroid hormones that may characterize small-for-gestational-age (SGA) newborns. We used data from screening for congenital hypothyroidism in a large population to evaluate the relationship between growth restriction and thyroid function in the first week of life.
Materials and Methods: Subjects: 14,092 newborns (13,333 appropriate-for-gestational-age (AGA) and 759 SGA) screened for congenital hypothyroidism on the third day of life. The screening test measured plasma concentrations of TSH and T4 by fluoroimmunoenzyme assay.
Results: Comparison of SGA and AGA newborns revealed lower serum concentrations of T4 in preterm and term SGA infants (p=0.0001), whereas concentrations of TSH were significantly higher only in term SGA infants (p=0.0001). T4 concentrations were positively correlated with gestational age in SGA and AGA groups, whereas TSH concentrations were only correlated with gestational age in the AGA group. 1.84% of SGA babies were recalled for TSH and T4 anomalies against only 0.93% of AGA newborns (p=0.01).
Conclusion: SGA babies had a higher incidence of transient hypothyroidism and required accurate follow-up and close monitoring of thyroid function.


SGA; Thyroid hormones

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