source: Thyroid: Official Journal of the American Thyroid Association
Sato S, Noh JY, Sato S, Suzuki M, Yasuda S, Matsumoto M, Kunii Y, Mukasa K, Sugino K, Ito K, Nagataki S, Taniyama M
Methimazole (MMI) is usually used at an initial dose of 30 mg/day for severe Graves’ disease (GD) hyperthyroidism, but adverse effects are more frequent at this dose than at MMI 15 mg/day.
We designed a regimen to address the lack of a primary therapeutic effect of the MMI 15 mg/day by combining it with inorganic iodine at 38.2 mg/day. Our aim was to compare the two regimens (MMI 15 mg+inorganic iodine at 38.2 mg/day (M15+I) vs. MMI 30 mg/day (M30)) in terms of therapeutic effect, adverse effects, and remission rate.
Design and Patients:
In a prospective study, 310 patients with untreated GD (serum free thyroxine (fT4) ≥5 ng/dL) were assigned to one of the two regimens. Potassium iodide was discontinued in the M15+I group as soon as the serum fT4 level was within the reference range (0.8-1.6 ng/dL).
Percentages of patients achieving an fT4 level within reference range in ≤30, ≤60, or 90 days on the study treatment regimens were 45.3%, 73.9%, and 82.0% respectively for the M15+I group, and 24.8%, 63.1%, and 75.2% respectively for the M30 group. Hence, the proportions of patients achieving this goal in ≤30 or ≤60 days were significantly larger in the M15+I group. Adverse effects that required discontinuation of MMI were more frequent in the M30-treated than in the M15+I-treated group (14.8% vs. 7.5%; p=0.0387). The remission rates in the M15+I and M30 groups were 19.9% and 14.8%-higher in the former, but the difference did not reach statistical significance.
The results of this study raise the possibility that M15+I is superior to M30 as a primary treatment for moderate to severe hyperthyroidism caused by GD.
Ito Hospital, Japan