In scope of the in-service training program, Eastern Mediterranean University (EMU) Dr. Fazıl Küçük Medicine Faculty continues to offer seminars targeted towards the doctors working at Famagusta State Hospital. During the seminar which took place on Friday, 22 March 2019, the most frequently encountered thyroid diseases, namely hypothyroidism, hyperthyroidism and thyroid nodules, were discussed from the perspective of an endocrinologist. The seminar was offered by EMU Dr. Fazıl Küçük Medicine Faculty academic staff member Prof. Dr. Özlem Tarçın, who stated that Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH) level is the first screening test to evaluate thyroid diseases. According to Prof. Dr. Tarçın, “The most common form of Hypothyroidism is Hashimoto Thyroiditis and occurs in about 10% of the population. However, antibody positivity alone is not a disease. When TSH exceeds normal values, the decision of treatment is given by the doctor by evaluating the presence of symptoms. Some drugs may affect the absorption of thyroid hormone”.
The Use of Medicine and Salt Intake
Stressing the importance of having at least 4 hour-intervals between the use of drugs containing iron and calcium, anti-epileptics and cholestramine, Prof. Dr. Tarçın went on to state that Thyroid Scintigraphy scan should show the presence of increased iodine involvement. The seminar, which provided information on the details of of Graves' Disease showing familial features and the use of thyroid drugs in pregnancy, also underlined that permanent treatment methods should be considered in hyperthyroidism caused by hyperactive (toxic) nodules.
Having made important statements about the use of salt, Prof. Dr. Tarçın emphasized the following: “The only limitation for the use of iodised salt in thyroid patients is for those with hyperthyroidism. The use of iodised table salt in patients without hyperthyroidism but with hypothyroidism or normal thyroid gland is recommended. Iodine intake is important for people living in countries with iodine deficiency, especially for pregnant women, and it is not appropriate to use non-iodised salts. Thyroid nodules are common and often benign lesions. About 3 to 5% of thyroid nodules are likely to have cancer, and the characteristics that determine the risk of cancer can be detected by thyroid USG. For nodules with a size greater than 1 cm or suspicion of cancer in USG for nodules larger than 5 mm, fine needle biopsy should be performed.