|Description:||This patient presented with what was diagnosed as a Grade-II malnutrition goiter, due to a deficiency of iodine in her diet.|
Iodine deficiency is estimated to affect 2 billion individuals worldwide, including an approximately 31.5% of school-aged children, and is the world’s most prevalent cause of thyroid disease. 58 Iodine, a trace element found in soil and seafood, is an essential component of the thyroid hormones involved in regulating the body’s metabolic processes. Deficiency disorders include physical and mental retardation (including severe congenital form known as cretinism), hypothyroidism, goiter, and varying degrees of other growth and developmental abnormalities.
The universal salt iodization has been an effective approach to reducing the burden of iodine deficiency disorders. However, reports of excessively high levels of iodine have been reported among refugee camps in Africa raising a concern for a risk for iodine-induced hyperthyroidism (IIH). IIH can occur among previously iodine deficient populations, particularly females over 40 years of age, during a short period following the introduction of iodized salt. 59 While this risk for IIH remains, there are currently no reports of its occurrence among resettled refugees.