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      Hyperparathyroidism after radioactive iodine therapy for Graves disease.


      Adenoma, etiology, Adult, Aged, Calcium, blood, Child, Female, Graves Disease, radiotherapy, Humans, Hyperparathyroidism, surgery, Hyperplasia, Iodine Radioisotopes, adverse effects, Middle Aged, Parathyroid Glands, pathology, Parathyroid Neoplasms, Radiotherapy, Time Factors

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          The association of external ionizing radiation to the head and neck and the subsequent development of hyperfunctioning parathyroid glands has been documented in recent years. This also has been demonstrated experimentally in animals. Despite the numbers of patients with Graves disease who have been treated with radioactive iodine, there are no reports in the literature of parathyroid surgery for hyperparathyroidism secondary to earlier treatment with radioactive iodine for Graves disease. This report describes the operative and pathologic findings in four patients with hyperparathyroidism. These patients had previously been treated with radioactive iodine for Graves disease. The pathologic findings at surgery included in three cases a single enlarged hyperplastic gland consistent with a parathyroid adenoma. One patient had hyperplasia of all four glands. The two largest glands and halves of the two remaining glands were removed. In a long-term follow-up of children and adolescents treated with radioactive iodine for Graves disease, Levy and Schumacher found calcium elevations in 10 of 159 patients. The increased incidence of hyperparathyroidism following radioactive iodine treatment for Graves disease in children and adolescents would seem several times higher than normal. Whether adults who have radioactive iodine treatment for Graves disease have a similar increase incidence is not known. Meanwhile it would seem reasonable to suggest that patients whose hyperthyroidism is treated with radioactive iodine should have their serum calcium levels determined at 5-year intervals.

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