Psychopathological and cognitive features in subclinical hypothyroidism

I. Marina Baldini, Antonio Vita, Massimo C. Mauri, Vincenzina Amodei, Massimiliano Carrisi, Selvia Bravin, Luigi Cantalamessa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


1. To evaluate affective and cognitive dysfunctions in subjects with a marginal form of thyroid hypofunction the authors studied a population of female goiter patients, divided in two groups on the basis of thyroid function: euthyroidism and subclinical hypothyroidism (SCH). 2. The SCH patients were treated with levothyroxine (LT4) in order to obtain euthyroidism, as demonstrated by normalization of the hormonal pattern. 3. Both groups were evaluated with a wide range of psychometric tests (Wechsler memory test, scribble test, reaction times) and psychopathological rating scales (Hamilton rating scales for depression and anxiety, brief psychiatric rating scale) at admission and after 3 months. 4. At admission, a significant decrease in logical memory was found in SCH patients; no differences in affectivity ratings were found between the groups. 5. After LT4 treatment, SCH patients showed a significant improvement in some items of memory performance. In conclusion, when interfering factors relating to the perception of disease were excluded by employing euthyroid goiter patients as a comparison group, SCH appeared associated only with memory impairment, while the impairment of affective functions described in previous studies comparing SCH patients with normal controls was not confirmed. A significant improvement of memory skills was induced by LT4 treatment in SCH patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)925-935
Number of pages11
JournalProgress in Neuro-Psychopharmacology and Biological Psychiatry
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Aug 1997


  • Affective functions
  • Cognitive functions
  • Levothyroxine treatment
  • Neuropsychological dysfunctions
  • Psychopathological dysfunctions
  • Subclinical hypothyroidism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biological Psychiatry
  • Pharmacology


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