Newswise — When the American Thyroid Association (ATA) holds its 80th Annual Meeting September 23-27, 2009 at The Breakers Hotel in Palm Beach, Florida, Anne R. Cappola, MD, Sc.M, of the Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, will suggest that in the absence of data to recommend universal screening for thyroid disease, screening efforts can be improved by identifying high-risk populations.

Whether to ‘seek out’ high risk, asymptomatic groups with subclinical hypothyroidism or subclinical hyperthyroidism, is an ongoing issue with underlying questions about efficacy and costs.

“Because hypothyroidism is an important health problem easily treated with thyroid hormone replacement, screening high-risk populations during pregnancy is currently recommended, but until we have a better idea about which other groups with subclinical hypothyroidism would benefit from treatment, it is premature to recommend screening of other populations,” says Dr. Cappola.

According to Dr. Cappola, testing can be undertaken at most facilities, but there needs to be an agreed upon policy on whom to treat with the total cost of finding a case economically balanced in relation to medical expenditure.

Her presentation is Friday, September 25 at 6:45 am.

The American Thyroid Association (ATA) is the lead organization in promoting thyroid health and understanding thyroid biology. The ATA values scientific inquiry, clinical excellence, public service, education, collaboration, and collegiality.

A non-profit medical society founded in 1923, the ATA fulfills its mission through supporting excellence and innovation in research, clinical care, education, and public health. ATA members are physicians and scientists who work to enhance the understanding of thyroid physiology and pathophysiology, improve the diagnosis and treatment of thyroid diseases, and promote the education of physicians, patients, and the public about thyroid disorders. The official journal “Thyroid” of the ATA is published monthly. “Clinical Thyroidology” is published online monthly for the benefit of clinicians and scientists around the world.

Thyroid diseases are among the most common disorders of the endocrine system, affecting almost 13 million Americans alone. The ATA has extensive online information for patients on thyroid disease (in English and Spanish) serving the clinician as a resource for patients and the public who look for reliable information on the internet. To further benefit patients, the ATA publishes an online journal “Clinical Thyroidology for Patients.” The Alliance for Patient Education was formed in 2002 to offer an exchange of information between the ATA and patient education groups: ThyCa: Thyroid Cancer Survivors’ Association, Inc.; the Light of Life Foundation, and the Graves’ Disease Foundation. A public forum is held each year in conjunction with the ATA annual meeting.

The 80th Annual Meeting of the ATA will be in Palm Beach, Florida, from September 23-27, 2009 at The Breakers Hotel. All registration and program information is available at We welcome your participation.

ATA 6066 Leesburg Pike, Suite 550, Falls Church, VA 22041 * (703) 998-8890 (Fax) (703) 998-8893 *

Register for reporter access to contact details

American Thyroid Association 80th Annual Meeting