Journal of Korean Endocrine Society 1996;11(1):11-17.
Published online November 7, 2019.
Clinical Significance of Routine Measurement of Serum Calcitonin in Korean Patients with Thyroid Nodules as a Screening test of Sporadic Thyroid Medullary Carcinoma.
Young Kee Shong, Cheol Soo Choi, Hye Young Park, Bo Youn Cho
Abstract
Background
: It is not easy to diagnose sporadic medullary thyroid carcinoma(MTC) before surgery and this might lead the patient reoperation and/or lowered chance of definite cure. Methods : The prevalence of sporadic MTC in Korean was studied in patients with thyroid nodules. A prospective study of 1048 consecutive patients with thyroid nodules was performed. In all patients, measurements of basal serum calcitonin, thyroid hormones, TSH, anti-thyroglobulin antibody and anti-thyroperoxidase antibody were undertaken along with technetium-99m thyroid scintigraphy and fine needle aspiration cytology. In patients with elevated basal calcitonin levels, calcium stimulated calcitonin level was determined. Results: Two patient had markedly elevated calcitonin levels(over 3,200 pg/mL and 1,763 pg/ mL) and another one slightly elevated calcitoni#n(71.9 pg/mL). Fine needle aspiration cytology was suggestive of MTC in one and nodular hyperplasia in the other two. They underwent surgery and histological examination revealed MTC in those two with markedly elevated calcitonin levels. The patient with slightly elevated calcitonin, who was on the maintenance hemodialysis due to chronic renal failure, had nodular hyperplasia. Conclusion: MTC was found in 0.19% of patients with thyroid nodules, which was not different with the previously reported prevalence in Europe. Routine measurements of serum calcitonin might be of value to detect sporadic MTC; however, the cost-effectiveness of routine measurement of serum calcitonin is not clear, considering the relatively low prevalence of MTC in Koreans.
Key Words: Calcitonin, Medullary Thyroid Carcinoma


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