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Year : 2017  |  Volume : 21  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 26-30

Effects of thyroid status on glycated hemoglobin

Department of Endocrinology and Metabolism, IPGME and R and SSKM Hospital, Kolkata, West Bengal, India

Correspondence Address:
Rana Bhattacharjee
Department of Endocrinology and Metabolism, IPGME and R and SSKM Hospital, 244 AJC Bose Road, Kolkata - 700 020, West Bengal
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/2230-8210.196017

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Introduction: Glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c) can be altered in different conditions. We hypothesize that HbA1c levels may change due to altered thyroid status, possibly due to changes in red blood cell (RBC) turnover. Objectives: The objective of this study was to determine the effects of altered thyroid status on HbA1c levels in individuals without diabetes, with overt hyper- and hypo-thyroidism, and if present, whether such changes in HbA1c are reversed after achieving euthyroid state. Methods: Euglycemic individuals with overt hypo- or hyper-thyroidism were selected. Age- and sex-matched controls were recruited. Baseline HbA1c and reticulocyte counts (for estimation of RBC turnover) were estimated in all the patients and compared. Thereafter, stable euthyroidism was achieved in a randomly selected subgroup and HbA1c and reticulocyte count was reassessed. HbA1c values and reticulocyte counts were compared with baseline in both the groups. Results: Hb A1c in patients initially selected was found to be significantly higher in hypothyroid group. HbA1c values in hyperthyroid patients were not significantly different from controls. HbA1c reduction and rise in reticulocyte count were significant in hypothyroid group following treatment without significant change in glucose level. Hb A1c did not change significantly following treatment in hyperthyroid group. The reticulocyte count, however, decreased significantly. Conclusion: Baseline HbA1c levels were found to be significantly higher in hypothyroid patients, which reduced significantly after achievement of euthyroidism without any change in glucose levels. Significant baseline or posttreatment change was not observed in hyperthyroid patients. Our study suggests that we should be cautious while interpreting HbA1c data in patients with hypothyroidism.

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