Objective: To determine the factors associated with thyroid cancer, focusing on first-degree family history and ultrasonography (US) features, in euthyroid asymptomatic patients with thyroid nodules. Materials and Methods: This retrospective study included 1310 thyroid nodules of 1254 euthyroid asymptomatic patients who underwent US-guided fine-needle aspiration biopsy between November 2012 and August 2013. Nodule size and clinical risk factors–such as patient age, gender, first-degree family history of thyroid cancer, multiplicity on US and serum thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) levels–were considered together with US features to compare benign and malignant nodules. Multiple logistic regression analysis was performed to assess the risk of thyroid malignancy according to clinical and US characteristics. Results: Although all of the clinical factors and US findings were significantly different between patients with benign and malignant nodules, a solitary lesion on US (p = 0.041–0.043), US features and male gender (p < 0.001) were significant independent risk factors for thyroid malignancy in a multivariate analysis. Patient age, a first-degree family history of thyroid cancer and high normal serum TSH levels did not independently significantly increase the risk of thyroid cancer. However, multicollinearity existed between US assessment and patient age, first-degree family history of thyroid cancer and serum TSH values. Conclusion: Ultrasonography findings should be the primary criterion used to decide the management of euthyroid asymptomatic patients with thyroid nodules. The concept of first-degree family history as a risk factor for thyroid malignancy should be further studied in asymptomatic patients.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging