Journal of Korean Endocrine Society 2002;17(4):576-582.
Published online August 1, 2002.
A Case of Acute Suppurative Thyroiditis as a Complication of Acupuncture in Patient with a Benign Thyroid Nodule.
Tae Yong Kim, Han Mo Yang, Jae Kyung Hwang, Young Min Cho, Young Joo Park, Do Joon Park, Seong Yeon Kim, Hong Kyu Lee, Bo Youn Cho
Department of Internal Medicine, Seoul National University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.
Acute suppurative thyroiditis is an uncommon disease, and usually affects patients with preexisting thyroid gland pathology. Penetrating injury could provide an acquired channel for the infection to spread into the relatively infection-resistant thyroid gland. We describe the first case of acute suppurative thyroiditis, as a complication of acupuncture, in a patient with a benign thyroid nodule. A 54-year-old male received acupuncture on his neck for the treatment of a previously diagnosed thyroid nodule. Four days after the acupuncture, the patient was admitted due to severe pain of the anterior neck and odynophagia. Fever and tenderness over the thyroid gland were observed. Burkholderia cepacia was isolated from a culture dish of aspirate of the thyroid gland. A neck computed tomography scan showed an abscess in the thyroid gland. Antibiotic treatment, and repeated drainage of the abscess, ameliorated the symptoms of infection. Two weeks after admission, the patient was discharged without sequela. Acupuncture should be considered as a kind of penetrating injury, which may induce acute suppurative thyroiditis.
Key Words: Thyroid nodule, Acupuncture, Acute suppurative thyroiditis

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