The UK NSC recommendation on Congenital hypothyroidism screening in newborns (currently under review)
Find general information about population health screening.
More about Congenital hypothyroidism
Underactivity of the thyroid gland (hypothyroidism) can arise for a number of reasons. Hypothyroidism can occur in newborn infants (Congenital Hypothyroidism, CHT) as well as later on in childhood (acquired Hypothyroidism, AHT). Affected newborns look, and usually act, normal for the first few days and the national screening programme for CHT, by blood spot collection, ensures that affected infants are identified and treated as early as possible. The commonest cause of CHT is a poorly developed or absent thyroid gland; the underlying basis to this abnormality is only clear in a small proportion of cases. CHT can also occur if there is a defect in thyroxine production within the gland. These defects may be permanent or transient. Although every child with CHT should be started on thyroxine promptly, they should be evaluated at some time later to exclude a transient problem. Children with CHT do very well as adults in the long-term, as long as they receive adequate thyroxine replacement.
Screening in the UK
Compare how screening is offered across the UK.
• British Society for Paediatric Endocrinology and Diabetes
The stakeholder groups will be involved when the recommendation is next reviewed. If you think your organisation should be added, please contact us. More information for stakeholders can be found in appendix C of the UK NSC evidence review process.
Related documentsScreening for Congenital Hypothyroidism (PDF document, 757KB, 06/04/10)
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