New Rochelle, NY, September 30, 2014—Levothyroxine (L-T4), long the standard of care for treating hypothyroidism, is effective in most patients, but some individuals do not regain optimal health on L-T4 monotherapy. New knowledge about thyroid physiology may help to explain these differences. An expert task force of the American Thyroid Association on thyroid hormone replacement reviewed the latest studies on L-T4 therapy and on alternative treatments to determine whether a change to the current standard of care is appropriate, and they present their recommendations in the article “Guidelines for the Treatment of Hypothyroidism,” published in Thyroid, a peer-reviewed journal from Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers and the official journal of the American Thyroid Association (ATA). The Guidelines are available free on the Thyroid website.
Task force co-chairs J. Jonklaas and A.C. Bianco, with colleagues from the Clinical and Translational Science sub-committees, coauthored the Guidelines on behalf of the American Thyroid Association Task Force on Thyroid Hormone Replacement. The authors reviewed the clinical literature related to three main therapeutic categories: levothyroxine therapy; non-levothyroxine-based thyroid hormone therapies (including thyroid extracts, synthetic combination therapy, triiodothyronine therapy, and compounded thyroid hormones); and use of thyroid hormone analogues.
The task force concluded that levothyroxine should remain the standard of care for treating hypothyroidism, noting that no consistently strong evidence supports the superiority of alternative therapies. They emphasize that the recommendations are intended to guide physicians’ clinical decision-making on thyroid hormone replacement therapy for individual patients.
“These very comprehensive guidelines provide a superb overview on the current evidence about treatment modalities for patients with hypothyroidism,” says Peter A. Kopp, MD, Editor-in-Chief of Thyroid and Associate Professor of Medicine, Division of Endocrinology, Metabolism and Molecular Medicine, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, Chicago, Illinois. “In addition, the document highlights gaps in our knowledge and indicates which topics are in need of future research, for example the need for long-term outcome clinical trials testing combination therapies and continuing research on thyroid hormone analogs.”
“These ATA guidelines, developed by an expert team, provide useful, up-to-date information on why to treat, including subclinical disease, who to treat, and how to treat hypothyroidism. Information is evidence-based and recommendations are graded. I think they will be used extensively by all clinical endocrinologists, especially by our members,” says Hossein Gharib, MD, President of the ATA, Professor of Medicine, Mayo Clinic College of Medicine, Rochester, Minnesota.
About the Journal
Thyroid, the official journal of the American Thyroid Association, is an authoritative peer-reviewed journal published monthly online with Open Access options and in print. The Journal publishes original articles and timely reviews that reflect the rapidly advancing changes in our understanding of thyroid physiology and pathology, from the molecular biology of the cell to clinical management of thyroid disorders. The Thyroid journal program also includes the monthly highly valued abstract and commentary publication, Clinical Thyroidology (Editor-in-Chief Jerome M. Hershman, MD), and a videojournal companion to Thyroid, VideoEndocrinology (Editor-in-Chief Gerard Doherty, MD). Complete tables of content and sample issues may be viewed on the Thyroid website.
About the Society
The American Thyroid Association (ATA) is the leading worldwide organization dedicated to the advancement, understanding, prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of thyroid disorders and thyroid cancer. ATA is an international membership medical society with over 1,700 members from 43 countries around the world. Celebrating its 91st anniversary, the ATA delivers its mission—of being devoted to thyroid biology and to the prevention and treatment of thyroid disease through excellence in research, clinical care, education, and public health—through several key endeavors: the publication of highly regarded professional journals, Thyroid, Clinical Thyroidology, and VideoEndocrinology; annual scientific meetings; biennial clinical and research symposia; research grant programs for young investigators, support of online professional, public, and patient educational programs; and the development of guidelines for clinical management of thyroid disease and thyroid cancer. The ATA promotes thyroid awareness and information through its online Clinical Thyroidology for the Public (distributed free of charge to over 11,000 patients and public subscribers) and extensive, authoritative explanations of thyroid disease and thyroid cancer in both English and Spanish. The ATA website serves as the clinical resource for patients and the public who look for reliable information on the Internet.
About the Publisher
Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers is a privately held, fully integrated media company known for establishing authoritative peer-reviewed journals in many promising areas of science and biomedical research, including Diabetes Technology & Therapeutics, Journal of Women’s Health, Journal of Men’s Health, and Metabolic Syndrome and Related Disorders. Its biotechnology trade magazine, Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News (GEN), was the first in its field and is today the industry’s most widely read publication worldwide. A complete list of the firm’s more than 80 journals, books, and newsmagazines is available on the Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers website.