Iodine deficiency test. The doctor warns

Iodine we need. It is not synthesized in the human body, so it must be provided from the outside, primarily through diet.

The most important role of iodine is to ensure the proper functioning of the thyroid gland. Helps regulate the production of hormones – thyroxine and triiodothyronine. Adequate intake prevents hypothyroidism. Proper supply of this element also reduces the risk of developing parenchymal goiter and thyroid nodules. Excess can adversely affect the activity of this gland.

Pregnant women need more iodine in their diet. Needed for proper fetal development. Studies have shown that babies born to women who do not get enough iodine during pregnancy are more likely to have developmental delays and lower IQs than babies born to women who do not get enough iodine. Getting the right dose of iodine also helps maintain a healthy birth weight.

Breastfeeding women need more iodine. Getting the right dose of iodine (through breast milk) is also important for the development of the baby’s brain and nervous system. Iodine is important for children in later life.

There has been a lot of talk lately about iodine, especially in the context of the war in Ukraine. Doctors warn not to use iodine – in this form Lugol’s liquid or tablets – without any basis.

As mentioned above, iodine is an important element for our body. In addition, the World Health Organization has recognized its deficiency as one of the factors directly affecting human health. But keep in mind that if there are no instructions to accept it, it can bring more harm than good. Can lead among others hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism, as well as the development of Hashimoto’s disease.

There are those who say that it exists A simple test to check the level of iodine in the body. A test that everyone can do at home. This method is likely to be reliable to assess the rate of iodine absorption through the skin. But this is a path that has little to do with reality. In fact, there is nothing that Dr. Szymon Suwała, an endocrinologist, has reported.

“I have read and heard from patients many times that there is a simple test to check the level of iodine in the body and whether we have a problem with its deficiency – it would be enough. apply a small amount of iodine to the skin and assess how quickly it is “absorbed” (The sooner, the greater the iodine deficiency). I strongly advise against this method – not because it is dangerous (with a small amount of iodine, or rather), but simply because it is meaningless and devoid of reasonable grounds. “Absorption of iodine through the skin intact (bioavailability in this way is about 12%), mainly from other factors other than element deficiency. ambient temperature “.

This home test will not tell us anything. So what is the correct procedure?

“But how Diagnosis of iodine deficiency in one patient? Interestingly, in Poland – this is not done. It is the basis of the methods used to date in the diagnosis and monitoring of iodine deficiency in epidemiological studies. Ultrasound evaluation of goiter and urinary iodine excretion (daily yoduria) – You can also use Estimation of thyroglobulin concentration and TSH concentration> 5mIU / L in newborns. However, this is the most important thing Assessment of iodine deficiency at the population level, not at the individual level (Laboratories that test for yoduria should emphasize this) “- explains Suwała.

It was introduced in Poland in 1997 national iodine prevention programwhich, among others, consists of the mandatory iodization of table salt intended for domestic use. It did Iodine deficiency is not a big problem in Poland and if so, it is more of a local shortcoming. Do not use iodine supplements yourself unless your doctor prescribes iodine-containing medications..

“(…) In Poland, there are no instructions for the treatment and addition of iodine in groups other than pregnant and lactating women,” said the endocrinologist.


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