Congenital hypothyroidism (CH) is the most common cause of preventable mental retardation. Thyroid hormone deficiency in utero and in the first neonatal months is responsible for permanent damage. While foetal hypothyroidism is at present unavoidable, earlier diagnosis and initiation of treatment in neonates with CH is important and highly recommended. At the moment, the Italian screening program for CH allows diagnosis and treatment within the first month of life. In Italy, screening programs became obligatory only a short time ago. In some regions, they started a few years ago, whereas in others they have been carried out only in an irregular way and only a part of the population has been investigated. Therefore CH was diagnosed just on the basis of clinical signs, with a consequent delay in the initiation of substitutive therapy. We describe the case of a little girl with CH diagnosed when she was three years old. We report the results of this case follow-up study and we describe the features of her neuropsychological development to point out her improvement and permanent disorders. The little girl was clearly hypothyroid with delayed achievement at three, but with pharmacological treatment she showed a dramatic amelioration in growth, language, motor skills and cognitive performances.
|Translated title of the contribution||Missed diagnosis: a case of congenital hypothyroidism treated after three years|
|Number of pages||4|
|Publication status||Published - Dec 1996|