Article Text

Download PDFPDF
IgG4-related disease of the thyroid gland
  1. Tânia Matos1,
  2. Margarida Mendes de Almeida2,
  3. Lucas Batista3,4 and
  4. Sónia do Vale1,4
  1. 1Endocrinology, Diabetes, and Metabolism Department, Centro Hospitalar Universitário Lisboa Norte EPE, Lisboa, Portugal
  2. 2Pathology Department, Centro Hospitalar Universitário Lisboa Norte EPE, Lisboa, Portugal
  3. 3Surgery Department, Centro Hospitalar Universitário Lisboa Norte EPE, Lisboa, Portugal
  4. 4Endocrinology Department, Faculdade de Medicina, Universidade de Lisboa, Lisboa, Portugal
  1. Correspondence to Dr Tânia Matos; tania.loureiro.matos{at}


IgG4-thyroid-related disease (TRD) represents an uncommon spectrum of diseases, with four subcategories established so far, IgG4-related Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, fibrosing variant of Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, Riedel’s thyroiditis and Graves disease with elevated IgG4 levels. We report the case of a 59-year-old woman presenting with painless cervical swelling and hypothyroidism. Thyroid gland was enlarged and distinctively very hard, with reduced mobility. Neck ultrasonography showed multiple nodularity and diffuse thyroid enlargement, which on CT scan conditioned slight deviation of the airway. Fine-needle aspiration of the biggest nodule was suggestive of lymphocytic thyroiditis. She developed compressive symptoms and was submitted to total thyroidectomy. Histology of the thyroid revealed extensive areas of fibrosis, oncocytic cells and lymphoplasmacytic infiltrates. Immunohistochemistry confirmed the predominance of IgG4-secreting plasma cells. IgG4-TRD is characterised by a rapidly progressive and destructive thyroiditis process. Typical presentation can often mimic malignancy; hence, an opportune recognition of IgG4-TRD may avoid unnecessary burdens.

  • thyroid disease
  • thyroiditis

Statistics from

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.


  • Contributors SdV, MMdA and LB were involved in the treatment of the presented patient. TM wrote the manuscript in collaboration with SdV, LB and MMdA. All authors contributed to the final version of the manuscript.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent for publication Obtained.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.