Subacute thyroiditis with airway compromise in a 5-year-old boy

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BMJ Case Reports


A 5-year-old boy presented with intermittent fever for 1 month, painful neck swelling associated with dysphagia, hoarseness of voice for 3 weeks and dyspnoea of 1-day duration. On evaluation, he had elevated serum thyroglobulin levels and inflammatory markers. There was a diffuse glandular thyroid enlargement with hypoechoic areas on neck ultrasonography. Fine-needle aspiration cytology was suggestive of subacute thyroiditis (SAT), and MRI of the neck confirmed narrowing of the tracheaby the enlarged thyroid. He received steroids to relieve airway compression. Levothyroxine was started. On follow-up, he was symptom-free and euthyroid; steroids and levothyroxine were discontinued.SAT presenting with compression of trachea is rare in children. This highlights the need for identifying the type of thyroiditis to determine treatment modality.



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