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Changes in thyroid function status of suicidal patients

Shazia Khurshid, Muhammad Pervaiz, Sareen Akhtar, Shan Elahi, Asma Zaidi, Zohaib Saeed, Syed Majid Bukhari


Background This study was carried out at Punjab Institute of Mental Health and Centre for Nuclear Medicine Mayo Hospital, Lahore. It is aimed at the possible association of thyroid malfunctioning with suicide attempts of patients. Objective Determination of thyroid function status of suicidal psychiatric patients and their comparison with psychiatric patients without suicide attempt or ideation. Methods Total 54 patients with either past history of suicide attempt or current suicidal ideation were selected for analysis of their thyroid function status (age 15-55 years). Age matched 50 non-suicide psychiatric patients were included for comparison. Results Two patients with suicide attempt had overt thyroid dysfunction. Remaining patients had serum FT4, FT3 and TSH level within normal range. Suicide attempter patients had lower FT4 but increased FT3 and TSH levels compared to suicidal ideation patients. Serum FT4 and TSH levels in suicidal patients were not different from psychiatric patients. Serum FT3 in suicidal patients was lower than psychiatric patients (3.7 ± 0.8 vs. 4.3 ± 0.5; p < 0.05). Female suicidal patients had lower FT3 levels compared to male patients (3.4 ± 0.6 vs. 3.9 ± 0.8 pmol/L; p < 0.05). Discussion Local suicidal patients have higher incidence of overt thyroid disorder and lower FT3 levels compared to non-suicidal psychiatric patients.


Suicide; thyroid hormone; psychiatric patients; depression

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/0101-60830000000147

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