Thyroid function after diagnostic 123I-metaiodobenzylguanidine in children with neuroblastic tumors

Sarah C. Clement, Godelieve A.M. Tytgat, A. S.Paul van Trotsenburg, Leontien C.M. Kremer, Hanneke M. van Santen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Metaiodobenzylguanidine (MIBG) labeled with radioisotopes can be used for diagnostics 123I) and treatment (131I) in patients with neuroblastic tumors. Thyroid dysfunction has been reported in 52% of neuroblastoma (NBL) survivors after 131I-MIBG, despite thyroid protection. Diagnostic 123I-MIBG is not considered to be hazardous for thyroid function; however, this has never been investigated. Therefore, the aim of this study was to evaluate the prevalence of thyroid dysfunction in survivors of a neuroblastic tumor who received diagnostic 123I-MIBG only. Methods: Thyroid function and uptake of 123I in the thyroid gland after 123I-MIBG administrations were evaluated in 48 neuroblastic tumor survivors who had not been treated with 131I-MIBG. All patients had received thyroid prophylaxis consisting of potassium iodide or a combination of potassium iodide, thiamazole and thyroxine during exposure to 123I-MIBG. Results: After a median follow-up of 6.6 years, thyroid function was normal in 46 of 48 survivors (95.8%). Two survivors [prevalence 4.2% (95% CI 1.2–14.0)] had mild thyroid dysfunction. In 29.2% of the patients and 11.1% of images 123I uptake was visible in the thyroid. In 1 patient with thyroid dysfunction, weak uptake of 123I was seen on 1 of 10 images. Conclusions: The prevalence of thyroid dysfunction does not seem to be increased in patients with neuroblastic tumors who received 123I-MIBG combined with thyroid protection. Randomized controlled trials are required to investigate whether administration of 123I-MIBG without thyroid protection is harmful to the thyroid gland.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)579-585
Number of pages7
JournalAnnals of Nuclear Medicine
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2022


  • I-metaiodobenzylguanidine
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Neuroblastic tumors
  • Neuroblastoma
  • Radiation damage
  • Thyroid function


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