Rheumatoid arthritis and thyroid dysfunction: A cross-sectional study and a review of the literature

Hussein Mahagna, Alyssa Caplan, Abdulla Watad, Nicola Luigi Bragazzi, Kassem Sharif, Shmuel Tiosano, Naim Mahroum, Hen Hendel, Yehuda Shoenfeld, Doron Comaneshter, Arnon D. Cohen, Howard Amital*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Thyroid dysfunction appears to show increased prevalence in many autoimmune diseases; however, this comorbidity has not been properly investigated in patients with RA. This issue was addressed in this cross-sectional study. Using the database of the Clalit Health Services (CHS) in Israel, RA patients were paired with age- and sex-matched controls to compare the prevalence of hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism. Chi-squared and t-tests were used for univariate analysis and a logistic regression model was used for multivariate analysis. The study included 11,782 patients with RA and 57,973 controls. The rate of thyroid dysfunction diseases in RA patients was increased compared with the prevalence in controls (16.0% and 11.7%, p < 0.001, for hypothyroidism; and 2.33% and 1.81%, p < 0.001 in hyperthyroidism, respectively). In a multivariate analysis, RA was associated with hypothyroidism (OR = 1.42, 95% CI 1.34–1.50) and hyperthyroidism (OR = 1.26, 95% CI 1.10–1.45). RA is associated with thyroid dysfunction. Therefore, physicians treating patients with RA should be aware of the possibility of comorbid thyroid dysfunction and treat accordingly.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)683-691
Number of pages9
JournalBest Practice and Research: Clinical Rheumatology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 2018


FundersFunder number
Janssen Biotech


    • Autoimmune disease
    • Comorbidity
    • Hypothyroidism
    • Rheumatoid arthritis
    • Thyroid dysfunction


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