Carta Leonidas Dutra, presidente da Federação Internacional de Tireoide.
World Thyroid Day (WTD), May 25th, is dedicated to thyroid patients and to all who are committed to the study and treatment of thyroid diseases worldwide. The year 2011 is of special importance since it is the first time that World Thyroid Day will be celebrated by the American Thyroid Association (www.thyroid.org), the European Thyroid Association (www.eurothyroid.org), the Asia-Oceania Thyroid Association (http://aothyroid.org) and the Latin American Thyroid Society (www.lats.org).
This year, the commemoration of WTD coincides with the 25th anniversary of the dreadful Chernobyl accident as well as with the recent tragedy of Fukushima. Thus, it is appropriate that commemoration of this Day should also place an emphasis on environmental factors that affect thyroid function and exacerbate thyroid disease. One of the prime amongst these is radioactivity, as we have so sorrowfully once again witnessed. It is therefore our duty to provide accurate information in order to raise awareness of the risks of radiation exposure on the thyroid.
It is important that the public is educated with approaches to reduce radiation exposure after an accident. Adequate stocks of potassium iodide are important to be available to take prior to exposure to block uptake of radioactive isotopes into the thyroid gland. It is our hope that these dangers will also promote the development of alternative sources of energy.
This is a Day that offers members of Thyroid Associations around the world a splendid opportunity to highlight these many issues. By encouraging the national societies and thyroid working groups to provide the public with information about the diagnosis and treatment of thyroid diseases, as well as prevention through adequate iodine nutrition. This information can be distributed via the media, organized events, and meetings with the people. The target is to boost awareness, through optimal access to education, as to the importance of optimal functioning of the thyroid gland in childhood, during pregnancy and throughout adult life.
We all express wishes for many successful events around the world and for the further global expansion of this Day.