The measurement of the serum sex-hormone binding globulin in various thyroid diseases.

J. Földes, S. Vana, C. Bános, P. Lakatos, G. Tarján

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Synthesis of "sex-hormone binding globulin" (SHBG) is influenced by thyroid hormones and its concentration in the serum of female subjects may be a marker of thyroid hormone effect at the peripheral tissue (liver) level. Compared to the levels found in euthyroid females (n = 46), the mean (+/- S.D.) serum SHBG concentration was found elevated in overt hyperthyroidism (Graves' disease: n = 56; 141.6 +/- 37.6 vs. 48.3 +/- 16.2; toxic nodular goiter: n = 16; 119.9 +/- 50.7 vs. 48.3 +/- 16.2 nmol/l; P less than 0.001). In contrast, it was decreased in manifest hypothyroidism (n = 25; 24.9 +/- 14.8 vs. 48.3 +/- 16.2; P less than 0.001). In the group of preclinical hyperthyroidism (n = 43), despite suppressed TSH secretion, the serum value of SHBG was normal (47.4 +/- 16.8), while its serum level approached the lower border of the normal range in subclinical hypothyroidism (n = 10; 33.6 +/- 6.1 vs 48.3 +/- 16.2 nmol/l; P less than 0.01). Data indicate that the pituitary responds more sensitively than the liver to a slight change of the serum thyroid hormone level. During thyroid hormone replacement for hypothyroidism, measurement of serum SHBG may provide help to assess the response of the target organ to the given therapy. In patients with generalized resistance to thyroid hormone, the serum SHBG level is within the normal range (51.3 +/- 9.8 nmol/l), thus, its determination supports the diagnosis of this disease.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)81-90
Number of pages10
JournalActa medica Hungarica
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - 1990

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

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