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Year : 2018  |  Volume : 16  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 34-38

Interpretation of thyroid function tests

1 Department of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism, Christian Medical College, Vellore, Tamil Nadu, India
2 Department of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism, Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences, NCD Unit, Melbourne School of Population and Global Health, University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Nitin Kapoor
Department of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism, Christian Medical College, Vellore - 632 004, Tamil Nadu, India

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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/cmi.cmi_17_18

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Thyroid function tests are one of the most common endocrine panels in general practice because a good understanding of when to order them, interpretation of their results and indications for treatment are important for the optimal treatment of thyroid dysfunction. Thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) should be the first test to be performed on any patient with suspected thyroid dysfunction and in follow-up of individuals on treatment. It is useful as a first-line test because even small changes in thyroid function are sufficient to cause a significant increase in TSH secretion. Thyroxine levels may be assessed in a patient with hyperthyroidism, to determine the severity of hyperthyroxinemia. Antithyroid peroxidase measurements should be considered while evaluating patients with subclinical hypothyroidism and can facilitate the identification of autoimmune thyroiditis during the evaluation of nodular thyroid disease. The measurement of TSH receptor antibody must be considered when confirmation of Graves' disease is needed and radioactive iodine uptake cannot be done.

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