Brain metabolism in hypothyroidism studied with 31P magnetic-resonance spectroscopy

C. D. Smith, K. B. Ain

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

47 Scopus citations


Metabolic consequences of hypothyroidism in adult human brain, despite neuropsychological symptoms, have not been reported. We used 31P nuclear magnetic-resonance spectroscopy of the frontal lobe to examine the effect of acute hypothyroidism on cerebral metabolism. Paired analysis showed that the phosphocreatine/inorganic- phosphate (PCr/Pi) ratio increased from a median of 2·04 (interquartile range 0·15) to 2·22 (0·25) after treatment with levothyroxine (p=0·01). These reversible alterations in adult cerebral phosphate metabolism during acute hypothyroidism parallel PCr/Pi ratio changes described in skeletal muscle. This is the first direct evidence of cerebral metabolic effects of hypothyroidism on adult brain.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)619-620
Number of pages2
JournalThe Lancet
Issue number8950
StatePublished - Mar 11 1995

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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