The past 25 years have produced many changes in the methods of diagnosis and treatment of thyroid disease. Simultaneously, the incidence of the various types of thyroid diseases requiring therapy has altered. In view of these probable changes I have reviewed all patients with thyroid disease encountered at Illinois Research Hospital from 1936 to 1959 together with the results of treatment.
Incidence of Thyroid Disease Related to General Surgical Admissions
Table 1, which compares the incidence of thyroid surgical admissions to general surgical admissions during the period 1936 to 1959, clearly demonstrates the reduced incidence of thyroid admissions which have fallen from 14.8% in 1936-1940 to 5.2% in the period 1956-1959. It is somewhat difficult to account for the magnitude of this decline, although the authors have previously noted that the introduction of iodized salt into this area in 1924 was associated with a progressive decrease in the number of