Thyroid & parathyroid


Silent thyroiditis

Topic Completed: 1 March 2009

Minor changes: 17 September 2020

Copyright: 2003-2021,, Inc.

PubMed Search: silent thyroiditis

Shahid Islam, M.D., Ph.D.
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Cite this page: Islam S. Silent thyroiditis. website. Accessed December 8th, 2021.
Definition / general
  • Transient, painless hyperthyroidism that spontaneously resolves
  • Also called painless or sometimes chronic lymphocytic thyroiditis
  • Relatively uncommon; usually women
  • Cause unknown, although hyperfunction is due to destruction of thyroid follicles
Clinical features
  • Elevated T3 / T4, low radioactive iodine uptake
Case reports
  • Usually none, beta blockers possibly in hyperthyroid phase
Gross description
  • Diffuse goiter or slightly enlarged thyroid gland
Microscopic (histologic) description
  • Preserved lobular pattern with follicular destruction, variable lymphocytic infiltrate, rare / no oncocytic change, no / focal fibrosis
  • T cells present in paracortex, B cells predominate in germinal center
Microscopic (histologic) images

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Mild lymphocytic infiltrate

Differential diagnosis
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