Can Pretreatment Serum Beta-hCG be Used for Predicting Thyrotoxicosis in Gestational Trophoblastic Disease?

Document Type : Research Articles


Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Lampang Hospital, Lampang, Thailand.


Background: Gestational trophoblastic disease (GTD) comprises a diverse spectrum of entities of abnormal cellular proliferations originating in placental trophoblasts. The specific marker of GTD is beta-hCG which has a similar structure to the TSH molecule, interfering level of thyroid hormones. How and when to check for thyroid function test during this period remain challenging. Objective: To assess values of pretreatment beta-hCG and its benefit for predicting thyrotoxicosis among patients with diagnoses of GTD. Methods: Retrospective analytical study included all women diagnosed with GTD at Lampang Hospital from January 2010 to May 2020. The patients’ pretreatment beta-hCG and thyroid function were collected. Sensitivity and specificity for detecting laboratory hyperthyroidism were reported and classified by pretreatment beta-hCG levels. Results: Forty-four women with diagnoses of GTD were recruited. The range of pretreatment beta-hCG levels were classified  into 4 groups: beta-hCG > 50,000 IU/ml (group 1), beta-hCG > 100,000 IU/ml (group 2), beta-hCG > 150,000 IU/ml (group 3), beta-hCG > 200,000 IU/ml (group 4). The sensitivity for prediction of high fT4 were 100%, 94.1%, 94.1% and 88.2% in group 1,2,3 and 4, respectively, while the specificity were 12%, 20%, 32% and 44% in group 1,2,3 and 4, respectively. Conclusion: Pretreatment beta-hCG > 100,000 uIU/ml has the high sensitivity and acceptable specificity for predicting hyperthyroidism. So we don’t need to check or wait for thyroid function test in patients who had beta-hCG < 100,000 IU/ml.


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