Deficiency as well as excess dietary iodine is associated with several thyroid disorders including Grave's disease and goitre. Previously, cross sectional studies conducted among school children in Nepal showed high prevalence of iodine deficiency. In contrast, recently, few studies have revealed emerging trends of excess urinary iodine concentration in children. This paper, reports excess urinary iodine excretion and thyroid dysfunction among school age children from eastern Nepal.
It was a community based cross sectional study in which we measured urinary iodine excretion levels among school age children at baseline and after educational program. The educational program consisted of audio-visual and pamphlets on thyroid health. We also screened them for thyroid function status by physical examination and measuring serum thyroid hormones. Our results show that 34.4% of the children had excess urinary iodine concentration above the WHO recommended levels. Overall, 3.2% of the children were identified to have thyroid dysfunction. Urinary iodine concentration was significantly different between types of salt used and between salt iodine content categories.