Hypothyroidism: Overview, Causes, and SymptomsPlease note these remedies mentioned in this article are not meant to gnc testerone booster your thyroid hormone replacement medication. Always speak to your doctor before making any changes to your medication protocol or starting supplements to be sure they are right for you. My goal at Hypothyroid Mom is to share all the possible treatments for hypothyroidism in the hope that you find what works for you. I personally take thyroid medication every day. The thyroid gland normally releases treatment for low thyroid crucial hormones that travel throughout the bloodstream and reach receptors that are found throughout the whole body, so a disturbance in thyroid function treatment for low thyroid cause widespread, treatmen health problems. According to some estimates, 40 percent of the population suffers with some form of low thyroid function. Women, especially older women, are the most susceptible group for developing hypothyroidism.
Hypothyroidism: Diagnosis and Treatments
Hypothyroidism underactive thyroid definition and facts. Hypothyroidism overactive thyroid is a condition in which the thyroid gland produces an abnormally low amount of thyroid hormone. Many disorders result in hypothyroidism, which may directly or indirectly involve the thyroid gland. Because thyroid hormone affects growth, development, and many cellular processes, inadequate thyroid hormone has widespread consequences for the body.
What is subclinical hypothyroidism? Subclinical hypothyroidism refers to a state in which people do not have symptoms of hypothyroidism and have a normal amount of thyroid hormone in their blood.
This implies that the pituitary gland is working extra hard to maintain a normal circulating thyroid hormone level and that the thyroid gland requires extra stimulation by the pituitary to produce adequate hormones. Most people with subclinical hypothyroidism can expect the disease to progress to obvious hypothyroidism, in which symptoms and signs occur.
Before birth, a baby depends on the mother for thyroid hormones until the baby's own thyroid gland can start to function. Usually, this occurs after about 12 weeks of gestation or the end of the first trimester of pregnancy. Moreover, babies of mothers who had an underactive thyroid in the first part of their pregnancy who then were treated, exhibited slower motor development than the babies of normal mothers.
What are the signs and symptoms of hypothyroidism? The symptoms of hypothyroidism are often subtle. They are not specific which means they can mimic the symptoms of many other conditions and are often attributed to aging. People with mild hypothyroidism may have no signs or symptoms. The symptoms generally become more obvious as the condition worsens and the majority of these complaints are related to a metabolic slowing of the body. Common symptoms and signs include:.
What are the symptoms of severe hypothyroidism? What is myxedema coma? As hypothyroidism becomes more severe, signs and symptoms may include puffiness around the eyes, the heart rate slows, body temperature drops, and heart failure. Severe hypothyroidism may lead to a life-threatening coma myxedema coma. In a person with severe hypothyroidism, a myxedema coma tends to be triggered by severe illness, surgery, stress , or traumatic injury. Myxedema coma requires hospitalization and immediate treatment with thyroid hormones given by injection.
Where is the thyroid located? What are thyroid hormones? Thyroid hormones are produced by the thyroid gland. This gland is located in the lower part of the neck, below the Adam's apple. The gland wraps around the windpipe trachea and has a shape that is similar to a butterfly - formed by two wings lobes and attached by a middle part isthmus.
The thyroid gland uses iodine mostly from foods in the diet like seafood, bread, and salt to produce thyroid hormones. However, the hormone with the most biological activity is T3. Once released from the thyroid gland into the blood, a large amount of T4 is converted as needed into T3 - the active hormone that affects the metabolism of cells.
Hypothyroidism is a very common condition. This type of thyroid disorder is more common in women than in men, and its incidence increases with age. Examples of common causes of hypothyroidism in adults include Hashimoto's thyroiditis, an autoimmune form of overactive thyroid, lymphocytic thyroiditis, which may occur after hyperthyroidism underactive thyroid , thyroid destruction from radioactive iodine or surgery, pituitary or hypothalamic disease, medications, and severe iodine deficiency.
The most common cause of hypothyroidism in the United States is an inherited condition called Hashimoto's thyroiditis. This condition is named after Dr. Hakaru Hashimoto who first described it in In this condition, the thyroid gland is usually enlarged goiter and has a decreased ability to make thyroid hormones.
Hashimoto's is an autoimmune disease in which the body's immune system inappropriately attacks the thyroid tissue. In part, this condition is believed to have a genetic basis. This means that the tendency toward developing Hashimoto's thyroiditis can run in families. Hashimoto's is 5 to 10 times more common in women than in men.
Examples of these areas include Zaire, Ecuador, India, and Chile. Severe iodine deficiency occurs in remote mountain areas such as the Andes and the Himalayas. Since the addition of iodine to table salt and to bread, iodine deficiency is rare in the United States. Thyroiditis refers to inflammation of the thyroid gland. Lymphocytic thyroiditis is a condition in which the inflammation is caused by a particular type of white blood cell known as a lymphocyte.
In this type of thyroid disorder there usually is a hyperthyroid phase in which excessive amounts of thyroid hormone leak out of the inflamed gland , which is followed by a hypothyroid phase that can last for up to six months. In the majority women with lymphocytic thyroiditis, the thyroid eventually returns to its normal function, but there is a possibility that the thyroid will remain underactive.
People who have been treated for hyperthyroidism underactive thyroid like Graves' disease, and received radioactive iodine may be left with little or no functioning thyroid tissue after treatment. The likelihood of this depends on a number of factors including the dose of iodine given, along with the size and the activity of the thyroid gland.
If there is no significant activity of the thyroid gland six months after the radioactive iodine treatment it usually means that the thyroid gland no longer functioning adequately.
The result is hypothyroidism. Similarly, removal of the thyroid gland during surgery cause hypothyroidism. If for some reason the pituitary gland or the hypothalamus are unable to signal the thyroid and instruct it to produce thyroid hormones, it may cause decreased T4 and T3 blood levels, even if the thyroid gland itself is normal.
If pituitary disease causes this defect, the condition is called "secondary hypothyroidism. A pituitary injury may result after brain surgery or the blood supply to the brain has decreased. When the pituitary gland is injured, hypothyroidism results in low TSH blood levels because the thyroid gland is no longer stimulated by the pituitary TSH.
Usually, hypothyroidism from pituitary gland injury occurs in together with other hormone deficiencies, since the pituitary regulates other processes such as growth, reproduction, and adrenal function. Medications that are used to treat an overactive thyroid hyperthyroidism may cause hypothyroidism. These drugs include methimazole Tapazole and propylthiouracil PTU.
The psychiatric medication, lithium Eskalith, Lithobid , is also known to alter thyroid function and cause hypothyroidism. Interestingly, drugs containing a large amount of iodine such as amiodarone Cordarone , potassium iodide SSKI, Pima , and Lugol's solution can cause changes in thyroid function, which may result in low blood levels of thyroid hormone.
Are there special foods or diets for hypothyroidism? There is no special diet required for people with hypothyroidism. In the US, routine supplementation of salt, flour, and other foods with iodine has decreased the rates of hypothyroidism caused by an iodine deficiency.
What tests diagnose hypothyroidism? What is the treatment for hypothyroidism? Hypothyroidism can be easily treated with thyroid hormone replacement. The preferred treatment for most people with an underactive thyroid is levothyroxine sodium Levoxyl , Synthroid. This is a more stable form of thyroid hormone and requires once a day dosing. Liothyronine sodium Cytomel also may be prescribed to treat hypothyroidism under certain conditions. With the exception of certain conditions, the treatment of hypothyroidism requires life-long therapy.
However, over treating hypothyroidism with excessive thyroid medication is potentially harmful and can cause problems with heart palpitations and blood pressure control, and contribute to osteoporosis. What happens if hypothyroidism goes untreated? What are the complications? Untreated hypothyroidism can cause complications, for example, enlarged heart cardiomyopathy , worsening congestive heart failure , an accumulation of fluid around the lungs pleural effusion. What should I do if I have signs or symptoms of hypothyroidism?
If you have signs or symptoms the same or similar to hypothyroidism, discuss them for example, weight gain, constipation, or fatigue with your doctor or other healthcare professional. A simple blood test is the first step in the diagnosis. If you need treatment for hypothyroidism, let your doctor know of any concerns or questions you have about the available treatment, including home or natural remedies.
Hyperthyroidism occurs when an overactive thyroid gland produces an excessive amount of thyroid hormones.
Learn hyperthyroidism causes, symptoms, and treatment. Symptoms of Hashimoto's thyroiditis may include dry skin, fatigue, weight gain, feeling cold, excessive sleepiness, dry skin, dry coarse hair, difficulty swallowing, a lump in the front of the throat, muscle cramps, mood changes, vague aches and pains, problems concentrating, leg swelling, constipation, and depression. Hypothyroidism - Symptoms Patient Comments: Hypothyroidism - Treatments Patient Comments: Hypothyroidism - Diet Patient Comments: Hypothyroidism - Personal Experience Patient Comments: Hypothyroidism - Diagnosis Patient Comments: Hypothyroidism - Causes Find a local Endocrinologist in your town Hypothyroidism underactive thyroid definition and facts What is hypothyroidism?
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