How is subacute thyroiditis treated?

Updated: Mar 23, 2021
  • Author: Stephanie L Lee, MD, PhD; Chief Editor: Romesh Khardori, MD, PhD, FACP  more...
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Answer

The treatment of subacute thyroiditis is generally supportive to reduce the symptoms of thyrotoxicosis and to control neck pain in the setting of subacute granulomatous thyroiditis. Because no new hormone is being made, antithyroid medications are not effective in these conditions. Although the abnormal thyroid levels are temporary, emotional support is often necessary. [2, 3]

Patients are often dehydrated from thyrotoxicosis; encourage all patients to drink 6-8 cups per day of noncaffeinated fluids.

Surgical care is almost never recommended for subacute thyroiditis. In rare cases, surgery is recommended for patients who have frequent recurrences of thyrotoxicosis from subacute lymphocytic thyroiditis or recurrent pain from subacute granulomatous thyroiditis. [47]


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