Original Article

The results of 16 years iodization: Assessment of iodine deficiency among school-age children in Antalya, Turkey


  • Gamze Çelmeli
  • Yusuf Çürek
  • İkbal Özen Kücükçetin
  • Zümrüt Arslan Gülten
  • Sebahat Özdem
  • Sema Akçurin
  • İffet Bircan

Received Date: 21.10.2019 Accepted Date: 06.01.2020 J Clin Res Pediatr Endocrinol 0;0(0):0-0 [e-Pub] PMID: 31948188


Iodine deficiency (ID) continues to be a problem around the world. The present study investigates the prevalence of ID and goiter among school-age children (SAC) in the city center of Antalya, Turkey, aiming to show the effect of the iodization program on the nutritional iodine status, 16 years after it was launched.


A total of 1,594 school children aged 6–14 years were included in this cross-sectional study. The ID was evaluated based on median urine iodine/creatine (UI/Cr) (μg/g) levels and median urinary iodine concentrations (UIC)(μg/l). UICs were measured using the Sandell-Kolthoff method, while goiter status was determined by palpation, and staged according to the WHO classification.


The median UIC was found to be 174.69 μg/l (25th and 75th percentiles are 119.17–242.83 μg/l), and UIC was found to be lower than 50 μg/L in 6.5% of the population. The median UI/Cr increased from 62.3 μg/g to 163.3 and goiter rates decreased from 34% to 0.3% in the 16 years of the program. However, 19% of the population were classified as ID (mild, moderate or severe) and 11.5% as excessive iodine nutrition.


The comparison of two cross-sectional studies, carried out 16-years interval, shows that Antalya is no longer an iodine deficient region. That said, surveillance studies should be continued and the percentage of iodine deficient and iodine excess individuals in the population should be monitored to avoid emerging problems.

Keywords: iodine deficiency, prevalence, school-age children, Turkey