Indexed on: 11 Mar '16Published on: 11 Mar '16Published in: The Journal of clinical endocrinology and metabolism
Treatment for differentiated thyroid carcinoma (DTC) in pediatric patients is based mainly on evidence from adult series due to lack of data from pediatric cohorts. Our objective was to evaluate presentation, treatment-related complications, and long-term outcome in patients with pediatric DTC in the Netherlands.In this nationwide study, presentation, complications and outcome of patients with pediatric DTC (age at diagnosis ≤18 years) treated in the Netherlands between 1970 and 2013 were assessed using medical records.We identified 170 patients. Overall survival was 99.4% after median follow-up of 13.5 (range 0.3-44.7) years. Extensive follow-up data were available for 105 patients (83.8% women), treated in 39 hospitals. Median age at diagnosis was 15.6 (range 5.8-18.9) years. At initial diagnosis, 43.8% of the patients had cervical lymph node metastases; 13.3% had distant metastases. All patients underwent total thyroidectomy. Radioiodine was administered to 97.1%, with a median cumulative activity of 5.66 (range 0.74-35.15) GBq. Lifelong postoperative complications (permanent hypoparathyroidism and/or recurrent laryngeal nerve injury) were present in 32.4% of the patients. At last known follow-up, 8.6% of the patients had persistent disease and 7.6% experienced a recurrence. TSH suppression was not associated with recurrences (OR 2.00, 95% CI 0.78 to 5.17, P = 0.152).Survival of pediatric DTC is excellent. Therefore, minimizing treatment-related morbidity takes major priority. Our study shows a frequent occurrence of lifelong postoperative complications. Adverse effects may be reduced by centralization of care, which is crucial for children with DTC.