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Quick peek on causes and symptoms of Hypothyroidism.

Quick peek on causes and symptoms of Hypothyroidism.


When the thyroid does not produce and release enough thyroid hormone into your bloodstream, it is known as hypothyroidism. Your metabolism becomes slower as a result. Hypothyroidism, also known as an underactive thyroid, can make you feel exhausted, put on weight, and have trouble handling cold weather. Hormone replacement therapy is the primary method of treatment for hypothyroidism.

What is hypothyroidism?

When your body doesn’t create enough thyroid hormones, hypothyroidism develops. The thyroid is a little gland with a butterfly form that is located in front of the windpipe. Hormones that aid in energy regulation and use are released.

The actions of your digestive system and your heartbeat are among the processes that thyroid hormones assist regulate. The natural processes of your body slow down if you don’t have enough thyroid hormones.

Hypothyroidism, often known as an underactive thyroid, typically affects adults over 60 and is more prevalent in women than in males. After symptoms appear or during a regular blood test, it might be identified.

The term used to describe an early, mild version of the illness is subclinical hypothyroidism. It’s crucial to understand that treatment for hypothyroidism is regarded as straightforward, secure, and efficient if you have lately obtained a diagnosis.

The majority of treatments focus on adding synthetic hormones to your low levels of natural hormones. These hormones will take the place of those your body isn’t manufacturing on its own and assist in restoring normal bodily processes.

How common is hypothyroidism?

The condition of hypothyroidism is pretty typical. Nearly 5% of Americans between the ages of 12 and 60 suffer with hypothyroidism.

With age, the disease becomes increasingly prevalent. It strikes more commonly in people over 60. The prevalence of an underactive thyroid is higher in women. Actually, 1 in 8 women will experience thyroid problems.

Signs and symptoms of hypothyroidism

The physical symptoms of hypothyroidism frequently range between individuals and might be challenging to pinpoint. The timing and severity of the signs and symptoms are also influenced by the condition’s severity.

Fatigue and weight increase are two early signs. Note that regardless of how well your thyroid is functioning, these both grow more prevalent as you age. As a result, you might not identify these changes as thyroid-related until additional symptoms manifest. For instance, these could include the scaly, rough, and dry skin and brittle nails linked to hypothyroidism.

The most typical hypothyroidism warning signs and symptoms are generally as follows:

  • fatigue
  • gaining weight
  • depression
  • constipation
  • being chilly
  • reduced perspiration
  • reduced heartbeat
  • increased cholesterol levels
  • arid skin
  • thinning, dry hair
  • a weakened memory
  • muscular tremor
  • stiffness, pains, and tightness in the muscles
  • joint discomfort and stiffness

The majority of persons experience a slow progression of symptoms over many years. The signs may be easier to spot when the thyroid slows down more and more. Naturally, many of these symptoms also increase in frequency as we age.

Consult your doctor if you think a thyroid issue is the cause of your symptoms. To find out if you have hypothyroidism, they can ask for a blood test.

Symptoms of hypothyroidism in adulthood

Research suggests that in addition to the most typical hypothyroidism symptoms, men may also experience erectile dysfunction.

Additional signs of hypothyroidism in women include:

Hypothyroidism can also manifest themselves while a woman is pregnant. Typically, hypothyroidism symptoms are consistent with other hypothyroidism patients.

Young individuals with hypothyroidism

Younger people are less likely to develop hypothyroidism, but it is still possible. Children with the syndrome may develop more slowly, while teenagers with it may have early puberty.

Congenital hypothyroidism, which refers to a lack of thyroid function at birth, is another possibility. Infants with hypothyroidism may exhibit the following signs:

  • more sleep than normal
  • constipation
  • difficulty with feeding
  • sluggish growth (if the condition is untreated)

Babies with hypothyroidism occasionally don’t exhibit any symptoms.

Severe signs of hypothyroidism

If hypothyroidism is not addressed, other symptoms could appear:

  • sensitive, swollen face
  • hoarseness
  • anaemia
  • decline in hearing

Rarely, severe hypothyroidism can cause myxedema coma, a life-threatening illness that needs immediate medical attention. Although the condition does not truly cause a coma, you could encounter:

  • fatigue
  • hypothermia
  • reduced blood pressure
  • minimal heartbeat

Causes of Hyperthyroidism

Both main and secondary causes can contribute to hypothyroidism. A disorder that directly affects the thyroid and makes it produce insufficient amounts of thyroid hormones is a key reason.

The pituitary gland’s malfunction, which prevents it from sending thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) to the thyroid to regulate thyroid hormones, is a secondary reason.

There are a lot more prevalent primary causes of hypothyroidism. The most typical of these root causes is Hashimoto’s disease, an autoimmune disorder. This inherited illness is also known as chronic lymphocytic thyroiditis or Hashimoto’s thyroiditis (passed down through a family).

The thyroid is attacked and harmed by the body’s immune system in Hashimoto’s disease. As a result, the thyroid is unable to produce and release adequate thyroid hormone.

The following are some of the other main causes of hypothyroidism:

  • Thyroiditis (inflammation of the thyroid).
  • hyperthyroidism treatment (radiation and surgical removal of the thyroid).
  • Iodine insufficiency refers to a lack of iodine in the body, which your thyroid needs to produce hormones.
  • Hereditary disorders (a medical condition passed down through your family).
  • Thyroiditis occasionally develops during a pregnancy (postpartum thyroiditis) or a viral disease.

Risk factors of hypothyroidism

The following elements can raise your risk of having hypothyroidism:

  • being a woman
  • 60 years of age or older
  • receiving radiation therapy for your chest or neck
  • being recently pregnant
  • having thyroid issues run in one’s family
  • possessing autoimmune disorders like Sjögren’s illness and type 1 diabetes

What happens if hypothyroidism is not treated?

If you do not receive treatment from a healthcare professional, hypothyroidism can develop into a serious and life-threatening medical disease. Your symptoms could worsen if you receive no treatment and could include:

  • Developing mental health issues.
  • having difficulty breathing
  • being unable to keep a healthy body temperature.
  • having cardiac issues
  • acquiring a goitre (enlargement of the thyroid gland).

Myxedema coma, a dangerous medical condition, is another possibility. When hypothyroidism is not treated, this may occur.


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Important Note on Hyperthyroidism you need to know.

Important Note on Hyperthyroidism you need to know.

Your thyroid develops and manufactures hormones that are involved in numerous bodily processes. Thyroid disease is characterised by the overproduction or underproduction of these critical hormones by your thyroid. Thyroid disease comes in a variety of forms, such as hyperthyroidism, hypothyroidism, thyroiditis, and Hashimoto’s thyroiditis.

What is Hyperthyroidism?

When the thyroid gland overproduces hormone, it results in hyperthyroidism, or an overactive thyroid. Diarrhea, respiratory problems, and weariness are just a few of the consequences that may spread throughout the body.

The thyroid is a neck gland with a butterfly form. The body’s growth and metabolism are regulated by the hormones it creates and releases into the bloodstream. In the US, hyperthyroidism affects about 1 in 100 adults over the age of 12. People over 60 are the ones most prone to experience it.

Hypothyroidism, or an underactive thyroid, is distinct from hyperthyroidism. The terms “hyper” and “low” describe the amount of thyroid hormone in the body, respectively. Hyperthyroidism can have serious problems if left untreated. However, by lowering the synthesis of thyroid hormones, medicine can typically regulate it.

What causes hyperthyroidism?

Hyperthyroidism can be brought on by a number of circumstances. The most typical cause of hyperthyroidism is the autoimmune illness Graves’ disease. In Graves’ disease, your thyroid gland is attacked by antibodies produced by your immune system, which causes an excessive amount of hormone to be released.

Women experience Graves’ illness more frequently than males do. According to a 2011 research summary by Trusted Source, environmental circumstances do play a part in determining whether someone would acquire Graves’, but genetics account for the majority of the decision. Graves’ illness isn’t caused by a single gene deficiency, but rather by tiny mutations in a number of genes, according to studies of families and twins.

In order for your doctor to accurately assess your risk factors, you should let them know if any members of your family have been given a hyperthyroidism diagnosis.

Other causes of hyperthyroidism outside Graves’ disease include:

  • Excess iodine. Iodine is a crucial component of T4 and T3, and too much of it might temporarily increase the thyroid hormone’s production. Fish and dairy products are two foods that contain iodine. It can also be found in some drugs, including cough syrups, medical contrast dyes, and amiodarone (for heart arrhythmia).
  • Thyroiditis (inflammation of the thyroid). Conditions known as thyroiditis cause the thyroid gland to enlarge and produce either an excessive amount or an insufficient amount of the hormone.
  • Benign nodules on the thyroid. On the thyroid gland, nodules, which are lumps, frequently form for unclear reasons. Although the majority of thyroid nodules are benign, some do produce excessive thyroid hormones. Nodules are sometimes known as adenomas or benign tumours.
  • Hazardous thyroid nodules (toxic adenoma). There are certain cancerous or malignant thyroid nodules. A nodule’s benignity or malignancy can be evaluated via ultrasound or a procedure known as fine needle aspiration tissue biopsy.
  • Testicular or ovarian cancer.
  • Blood has a lot of T4. Certain dietary supplements or excessive doses of the thyroid hormone drug levothyroxine can cause high levels of T4.

Symptoms of hyperthyroidism

While certain physical signs of hyperthyroidism may be clear, others may be more subtle and first difficult to detect. Sometimes anxiety and hyperthyroidism are confused.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) lists the following as hallmark signs and symptoms of hyperthyroidism:

It is possible for the thyroid gland to enlarge and develop a symmetrical or unilateral goitre. An enlarged gland is known as a goitre, and it is frequently identifiable as a lump or swelling near the base of the neck. Iodine deficiency is the most typical cause of a goitre.

Complications of hyperthyroidism

Depending on how well the body can adapt to the changes brought on by the extra thyroid hormones and how strictly a person adheres to their treatment plan, hyperthyroidism and accompanying symptoms can vary in severity. Possible complications from the condition are listed below.

Graves’ ophthalmopathy

Light sensitivity, pain or discomfort in the eye, and specific visual issues can all be brought on by Graves’ ophthalmopathy. A person’s eyes could also protrude.

Sunglasses and eye medicines can both aid with symptoms relief. In extreme circumstances, certain medications—such as steroids or immunosuppressive ones—can reduce the puffiness under the eyes.

A thyroid storm

A thyroid storm is a rare reaction that can happen following an illness, injury, or physical trauma like childbirth or surgery. If the person has undetected hyperthyroidism or problems managing the illness, it may also happen during pregnancy.

Emergency medical care is necessary for this potentially fatal reaction. Thyroid storm warning signs and symptoms include:

  • a pounding heart
  • acute fever
  • agitation
  • jaundice
  • vomiting
  • diarrhoea
  • dehydration
  • hallucinations

Treatment of hyperthyroidism

While some drugs focus on addressing thyroid hormone production, others treat the symptoms of hyperthyroidism, such as cardiac issues.


While beta-blockers cannot cure hyperthyroidism, they can lessen the symptoms while waiting for other treatments to work. It can take a few weeks or months, though.

Anthyroid medications

Antithyroid medication prevents the thyroid gland from overproducing thyroid hormone. Methimazole is a typical medication that doctors advise.

As methimazole may have adverse effects on the foetus, a doctor may advise propylthiouracil during a patient’s first trimester if the patient is pregnant. Later in the pregnancy, women who are pregnant may switch to methimazole.

The American Thyroid Association estimates that after using antithyroid medication for a period of 12 to 18 months, 20 to 30 percent of Graves’ disease patients have symptom remission. Medication side effects may include:

  • allergy symptoms
  • decreased white blood cells, which raises the risk of infection
  • rarely, liver failure occurs.
  • Iodine-131 radioactive

Active thyroid cells are destroyed when radioactive iodine penetrates them. There is only localised destruction and no adverse impacts that are felt widely. The radioiodine contains a very tiny dosage of radioactivity that is safe to consume.

However, women who are pregnant or nursing should not receive radioiodine treatment. Following therapy, doctors advise against getting pregnant for 6 to 12 months.


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