Differentiated thyroid carcinoma in children and adolescents - Clinical characteristics, treatment and outcome of 15 patients


HORMONE RESEARCH, vol.57, no.5-6, pp.153-156, 2002 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 57 Issue: 5-6
  • Publication Date: 2002
  • Doi Number: 10.1159/000058375
  • Journal Name: HORMONE RESEARCH
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.153-156
  • Keywords: differentiated thyroid carcinoma, children, adolescents, total thyroidectomy, PROGNOSTIC-FACTORS, FOLLOW-UP, RECURRENCE
  • Akdeniz University Affiliated: Yes


Background. Thyroid carcinoma in childhood and adolescence is uncommon and because of the slow progression of disease the standard treatment is controversial. The aim of this study was to perform a retrospective analysis of treatment results for differentiated thyroid carcinoma in this age group treated in our clinic. Material and Methods: From August 1988 to February 2001, 15 patients between the ages of 8 and 21 years (average 16.8) were treated for differentiated thyroid carcinoma at Akdeniz University Medical School Departments of General and Pediatric Surgery. The patients included 10 (67%) females and 5 (33%) males. None of the patients had a previous positive history of head and neck irradiation. All patients, except 2, were euthyroid at the time of diagnosis. Results: Nine of the patients underwent total thyroidectomy and in 6 cases subtotal thyroidectomy was performed. There were multiple lymph node metastases in 4 (27%) patients and (various forms of) cervical lymph node dissections were performed in these patients. In addition, 2 children (13%) showed pulmonary metastasis. The incidence of surgical complications was 20% (11 permanent, 1 transient hypoparathyroidism and 1 permanent laryngeal nerve injury). Histological examinations revealed the following: papillary carcinoma in 9 (60%), follicular carcinoma in 5 (33%) patients, and Hurthle cell carcinoma in 1 (7%) patient. Postoperative radioiodine ablation was also added to treatment in 10 (67%) of the patients and all patients received L-thyroxine in suppressive doses, After a median follow-up period of 57 months (range 5-149), all patients are alive and disease-free. Conclusion: Our observations suggest that although most children and adolescents with differentiated thyroid carcinoma are seen with more extensive disease than adults, a total or subtotal thyroidectomy with an appropriate lymph node dissection followed by ablative radioiodine treatment carries a more favorable prognosis. Copyright (C) 2002 S, Karger AG, Basel.