Basal and longitudinal changes in serum levels of TSH in morbid obese patients experiencing failure or success of dietary treatment

Laura Croce, Cristina Pallavicini, Silvia Crotti, Francesca Coperchini, Linda Minnelli, Flavia Magri, Luca Chiovato, Mario Rotondi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


PURPOSE: The relationship between thyroid function and obesity is a widely investigated one. The impact of thyroid hormones in determining the outcome of dietary/lifestyle interventions remains to be fully elucidated. The aim of this study was to compare basal and post dietary-intervention circulating thyroid-function parameters, lipid profile and fasting-glucose in euthyroid obese patients according to a success or failure of a dietary intervention program.

METHODS: In a retrospective longitudinal case-control study we enrolled 50 euthyroid obese patients who experienced a success in dietary intervention, as defined by a BMI reduction of at least 5% from baseline (Success Group) and 50 sex and age-matched euthyroid obese patients who experienced failure in dietary intervention as defined by either stable or increased body weight throughout the follow-up (Failure Group). Serum thyroid function parameters and metabolic profile at baseline and at the end of follow-up were collected.

RESULTS: At baseline, the two groups showed similar BMI, total-cholesterol, HDL-cholesterol and fasting-blood-glucose, but patients in Success Group had a significantly higher TSH as compared with Failure Group (2.20 ± 0.97 vs 1.66 ± 0.73, respectively, p < 0.001). Throughout a mean follow-up of 21.4 months TSH significantly decreased in Success Group (2.20 ± 0.97 vs 2.06 ± 0.98; p = 0.029) and increased in Failure Group (1.63 ± 0.72 vs 2.01 ± 0.99; p < 0.001). Multiple regression analysis showed that the outcome of the dietary intervention was significantly and independently related to baseline BMI (0.925; 0.861-0.993), age (0.957; 0.922-0.993), TSH (0.531; 0.290-0.973) and TSH-changes (1.011; 1.000-1.022) during follow-up.

CONCLUSIONS: Baseline serum TSH level is related to the final outcome of a dietary intervention program in obese patients.

LEVEL OF EVIDENCE III: Evidence obtained from a retrospective cohort or case-control analytic studies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1949-1955
Number of pages7
JournalEating and Weight Disorders
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2021


  • Body Mass Index
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Humans
  • Lipids
  • Obesity, Morbid
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Thyrotropin


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