Health-related quality of life in patients with thyroid disorders

Qual Life Res. 2004 Feb;13(1):45-54. doi: 10.1023/B:QURE.0000015315.35184.66.


Limited reports are available on quality of life (HRQL) in thyroid diseases, and no data are available in euthyroid disorders, such as goiter and Hashimoto thyroiditis. Also, asymptomatic patients may suffer a reduction in perceived health status due to distress related to physical appearance and awareness of disease. We measured HRQL by means of Medical Outcome Study Short Form-36 (SF-36) and Nottingham Health Profile (NHP) questionnaires in 368 patients (hypothyroid, 81; hyperthyroid, 45 (for both states including overt and subclinical states); Hashimoto thyroiditis, 51; euthyroid goiter, 191). The final scores of the domains were compared with age- and sex-adjusted Italian normative values, by computing the effect size. All domains of SF-36, except bodily pain, were reduced in thyroid disease; this was mainly the case of role limitation (both physical and emotional), general health and social functioning. The domains of NHP were less severely affected. HRQL was impaired also in the absence of altered hormone levels. Mood/behavior disturbances were present in a large proportion of patients and were significantly associated with poor HRQL. HRQL was significantly reduced in patients with thyroid diseases referred to a secondary level endocrinology unit. Perceived health status may be considered as an additional outcome of management and therapy of thyroid disorders.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Attitude to Health*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Italy
  • Logistic Models
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Mood Disorders / complications
  • Mood Disorders / psychology
  • Quality of Life*
  • Self-Assessment
  • Sickness Impact Profile*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Thyroid Diseases / classification
  • Thyroid Diseases / physiopathology*
  • Thyroid Diseases / psychology