It was attempted to assess the incidence of thyroid diseases in Polish children born between 1980-1986, who at the time of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster were 0-6 years old, or whose mothers were in the third trimester of pregnancy. 3071 children have been examined, 1772 girls and 1299 boys. The following were assessed in each child: the health status, the developmental level, the thyroid ultrasound examination, and the level of TSH, FT4, antithyroid antibodies ATM and ATGL in the blood serum. Disorders in thyroid morphology (abnormal echogenicity) have been found in 462 children (15%), almost twice as much in girls than in boys. Goiter has been recognized in 4.6% of all children, an abnormal echogenity in 5.4% and focal changes in 4.8%. 3.9% of children have been found to have a high level of ATM antibodies, and 8.7%--a high level of ATGL antibodies. Among 6 children, who had thyroidectomy, 2 children have been diagnosed to have ca papillary and 4 children--adenoma.
The survey carried out in 1990 covering the population of Sejny community, sponsored by the Ministry of Health and Welfare, program MZXVII, demonstrated the occurrence of goiter in 33.6% of studied persons. Such an incidence can rightly be recognized as an endemy. Predominance of cases with small or moderate enlargement of the thyroid (OB and I), low percentage of nodules (18%), and 2.8 times more frequent occurrence of goiter in women allows o characterize the endemy as mild. The percentage of goiter in this population does not differ from that found in this area before the Chernobyl disaster. However a small increase in the incidence of thyroid enlargement in a group of boys of age between 17 and 19 years, and an increase in percentage of nodular goiter in whole population was noted. The questionnaire studies confirmed in addition a high effectiveness of mass iodine prophylaxis introduced after the atomic disaster, especially in the population of developmental age. However, because of the latency period concerning the possible effects, the results obtained will be verified in the course of long-term prospective studies.
An incidence and morphology of the CNS congenital malformations in newborn babies and infants were analysed in the consecutive autopsies carried out in 1986-1990, i.e. following Tscharnobyl disaster. The obtained results were compared to those seen in the two earlier periods (1976-1980 and 1981-1986). In 1986-1990, a percentage of autopsies showing congenital CNS malformations increased approximately by two-fold (15%). The highest percentage of such malformations in specific years of the analysed period was noted in 1990 (20%). Central nervous system malformations were more frequent in female sex (57%) than in male sex (43%). In 64% of cases newborn babies were affected. A percentage of CNS malformations coexisting with other congenital malformations increased to 40% in the analysed period of time (from 29.4% in 1976-1985). Meningomyelocele (41%), congenital hydrocephalus (21.5%), multiple anomalies in brain (14%), and anencephaly (12.6%) constituted the most frequent group of CNS malformations. In 1986-1990, an incidence of meningomyelocele increased by more than two-fold (if this anomaly coexisted with hydrocephaly, an increase in the incidence exceeded three-fold), and hydrocephaly as well as an increase in the incidence of anencephaly by 1.5 times in comparison with 1976-1985.