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Medicina (Buenos Aires)

Print version ISSN 0025-7680On-line version ISSN 1669-9106


NIEPOMNISZCZE, Hugo et al. Epidemiology of palpable goiter in Greater Buenos Aires, an iodine-sufficient area. Medicina (B. Aires) [online]. 2004, vol.64, n.1, pp.7-12. ISSN 0025-7680.

The Hospital de Clínicas organized a free program of goiter detection by palpation. This campaign was aimed at the population of the metropolitan area of Greater Buenos Aires (11 million inhabitants), with the prerequisite that each participant should be quite unaware whether he/she was a carrier of any thyroid disease. Attendees were split into two groups, i.e., Random and Induced. The former consisted of 542 individuals who came to consultation due to mere curiosity, while the latter involved 500 subjects, comprising consanguineous family members of patients with thyroid disorders and also individuals who suffered from other ailments. Ages ranged from 2 to 85 years. In the Random Group, goiter prevalence of 8.7% was observed, while in the Induced Group it climbed to 14.4%. Since both groups were mostly made up of women (87.2%), a correction based on the masculinity index was applied to members of the Random Group. Thus, the total observed prevalence of goiter was 6%, diffuse goiters corresponding to 3.5% and nodular ones to 2.5%. The frequency of nodules increased with age, 90.5% occurring in those over 40 years. In the Induced Group, goiter prevalence among relatives of patients with thyroid disorders proved to be 13.1%, rising to 17.8% in those who suffered from other complaints. The epidemic data presented herein are the first arising from a screening survey carried out in a large iodine-sufficient population of the southernmost tip of the American continent. These results are useful to build up the world map of goiter prevalence in non-endemic areas.

Keywords : epidemiology; goiter; thyroid; iodine; Buenos Aires; Argentina.

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