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Year : 2017  |  Volume : 14  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 12-17

Study of epicardial fat thickness as a marker of visceral adiposity in patients with hypothyroidism

Department of Medicine, Era's Lucknow Medical College, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, India

Correspondence Address:
Ritu Karoli
Department of Medicine, Era's Lucknow Medical College, Sarfarazganj, Hardoi Road, Lucknow - 226 003, Uttar Pradesh
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0973-0354.200561

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Introduction: Hypothyroidism has adverse effects on the cardiovascular system. Visceral adiposity, the fat deposited around the internal organs, is recognized as an important risk factor. Hence, the present study was undertaken to investigate the presence of visceral adiposity, epicardial fat thickness (EFT), and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) in patients with hypothyroidism as compared to matched euthyroid controls. Materials and Methods: In a case–control hospital-based study, 100 patients of hypothyroidism and equal number of age-, gender-, and body mass index-matched euthyroid controls were enrolled. They were studied for EFT and the presence of NAFLD along with anthropometric and biochemical parameters. Results: Among the hypothyroid patients, 67% had serum thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) varying 4.5–10 mIU/L and 33% had serum TSH >10 mIU/L. Patients with hypothyroidism had higher waist circumference (92.4 ± 8.6 cm vs. 84 ± 6.2 cm, P = 0.002) and diastolic blood pressure (88 ± 4 mmHg vs. 72 ± 10 mmHg, P = 0.01) than controls. The hypothyroid patients had significantly higher levels of triglycerides, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance, and prevalence of metabolic syndrome (22% vs. 8%). Markers of visceral adiposity were significantly higher in hypothyroid patients, and EFT had positive correlation with serum TSH levels. Conclusion: We observed higher EFT in patients with hypothyroidism and a significant correlation between EFT and serum TSH levels. Whether increased epicardial thickness as a marker of visceral adiposity may be associated with the potential cardiovascular adverse effects of hypothyroidism warrants further research.

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