Abstract INTRODUCTION: Existing trials investigated the impact of medical treatment of thyroid disorders on health-related quality of life (QOL) and psychiatric symptoms. The aim of this prospective study is to analyze the impact of thyroid surgery on QOL and severity of psychiatric symptoms. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Forty-seven patients undergoing thyroid surgery (TS) were assessed before thyroidectomy (T0) and 37 also after surgery, >or=6 months after euthyroidism was achieved (T1). QOL and psychiatric symptoms were evaluated at T0 and T1 using the Medical Outcomes Study Short Form Survey (SF-36) and the Symptom Checklist-90 (SCL-90-R). Scores at T0 were compared with those of patients undergoing surgery for non-thyroidal disease and the SF-36 scores were also compared with the normative Italian sample. Changes in QOL and psychiatric symptoms between T0 and T1 were also examined. RESULTS: Health-related QOL in TS patients before surgery was poorer than in the comparison group on the SF-36 mental component summary measure and social functioning. Mental health improved significantly after surgery but social functioning remained markedly impaired. A significant reduction in the severity of psychiatric symptoms was observed. DISCUSSION: Our results indicate that even long after euthyroidism is achieved after surgery, patients show a significant improvement of mental health and a reduction of psychiatric symptoms. Nevertheless, patients continue to have a poorer QOL compared to the Italian normative sample.
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