Autoimmune thyroiditis (AIT) is an autoimmune disease with genetic background. Women are more likely to develop AIT. In adulthood, AIT is the most frequent cause for acquired hypothyroidism. Cytotoxic T-lymphocyte antigen (CTL-4) may play a role in the etiology of the disease. Diagnosis is made by determination of elevated antibodies against thyroid peroxidase and thyroglobulin, and a hypoechoic pattern in ultrasound. In case of hypothyroidism a substitutive therapy with levothyroxine is necessary. AIT may occur as postpartum thyroiditis or as a special entity as consequence of therapy with cytokines.
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