Purpose: Assessment of disease severity for patients with hyperthyroidism involves clinical evaluation and laboratory testing. To determine if there is a correlation between symptoms and thyroid function test results, we prospectively studied hyperthyroid patients using a standardized symptom rating scale and serum thyroid function parameters.
Patients and methods: We examined 25 patients with untreated, newly diagnosed Graves' disease using the Hyperthyroid Symptom Scale (HSS) and serum levels of thyroxine (T4), triiodothyronine (T3) relative insulin area (RIA), and estimates of free thyroxine index (FTI). In addition, we compared thyroid hormone levels with standard measures of depression and anxiety in these patients.
Results: When regression analyses controlling for age were performed, none of these symptom ratings were associated with FTI or T3 RIA. The HSS was correlated with goiter size and anxiety ratings and was inversely correlated with age.
Conclusion: The present study suggests that there is no relationship between the clinical assessment of disease severity and serum levels of thyroid hormone in untreated Graves' disease.