Calissendorff J, Falhammar H
Lugol’s solution and other preparations containing iodide have for almost a century been used as an adjuvant treatment in patients with Graves’ disease planned for thyroidectomy. Iodide has been shown to decrease thyroid hormone levels and reduce blood flow within the thyroid gland. An escape phenomenon has been feared as the iodide effect has been claimed to only be temporary. Lugol’s solution has many additional effects and is used in other settings beside the thyroid.
Still, there are questions of its mode of action, which doses should be deployed, if it should be used preoperative in all thyroidectomies or only in a few selected ones if at all, what is its use in other forms of thyrotoxicosis besides Graves’ disease, and what is the mechanism acting on the vasculature and if these effects are confined only to arterial vessels supporting the thyroid or not. This review aims to collate current available data about Lugol’s solution and other iodide preparations in the management of Graves’ disease and give some suggestions where more research is needed.
Karolinska University Hospital, Sweden
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