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How Do You Get Thyroid Disease

What Happens If Hypothyroidism Is Not Treated

How to Get Your Thyroid to Work Correctly

Hypothyroidism can become a serious and life-threatening medical condition if you do not get treatment from a healthcare provider. If you are not treated, your symptoms can become more severe and can include:

  • Developing mental health problems.
  • Not being able to maintain a normal body temperature.
  • Having heart problems.
  • Developing a goiter .

You can also develop a serious medical condition called myxedema coma. This can happen when hypothyroidism isnt treated.

How Many Of These Signs And Symptoms Do You Have

Skin

Dry, pale, and cool skin Moist, velvety, and warm skin like a babys Dry skin with deep cracks and scale Deep, noticeable lines on your palms and soles Yellowish-orange color on your palms and soles Doughy and swollen face, especially on your eyelids, lips, and tongue Widening nose Sweating less than before Goiter Protruding eyes Flushing on your face and red palms Darker skin in the creases of your palms, on your gums, or elsewhere in your mouth Rashes, especially in the creases of your skin Painless lumps and patches of scaly, discolored skin, and the affected skin feels hard and waxy Reddish spots on the skin that come and go

Protruding eyes

When eyes protrude, its often a sign of thyroid disease.

Painless lumps and patches of scaly skin feel hard and waxy

Lumps on discolored skin that feel hard and waxy can be a sign of thyroid disease.

Hair

Thinning eyebrows on the outer edge Coarse, dull, dry, and brittle hair that breaks easily Soft and fine hair with lots of shedding Thinning hair or balding patches Growing more slowly Dry, itchy scalp and dandruff Less hair on your legs, arms, and other areas

Nails

Thick, dry, and brittle with visible ridges Soft, shiny, and easily crumble Growing more slowly Peel, crumble, or break easily Lift up Curved with swollen fingertip and thickening skin above the nail

Curved nails with swollen fingertip

Itch

Itchy skin without a rash Untreatable and itchy hives

Existing skin disease

What Are Thyroid Problems

Through the hormones it produces, the thyroid gland influences almost all of the metabolic processes in your body. Thyroid disorders can range from a small, harmless goiter that needs no treatment to life-threatening cancer. The most common thyroid problems involve abnormal production of thyroid hormones. Too much thyroid hormone results in a condition known as hyperthyroidism. Insufficient hormone production leads to hypothyroidism.Although the effects can be unpleasant or uncomfortable, most thyroid problems can be managed well if properly diagnosed and treated.

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Thyroid Problems And Womens Health

In addition to being more common in women, thyroid problems can also cause some additional symptoms for women. If you have a thyroid condition then you may experience issues with your menstrual cycle or fertility. This is because the hormones that are produced by your thyroid gland can affect your reproductive system in various ways.

  • Thyroid disorders in girls can delay or speed up the onset of puberty.
  • Abnormal levels of thyroid hormones can make your periods lighter or heavier. In some cases, thyroid disorders can make your cycle less regular or could stop your periods completely.
  • Thyroid disorders can cause fertility problems if they prevent your ovaries from releasing mature eggs. You may also be at higher risk of developing ovarian cysts if you have an underactive thyroid.
  • If you are pregnant then there is a risk that a thyroid disorder could cause complications. Hyperthyroidism can increase the chances of having severe morning sickness, while hypothyroidism could put you at increased risk of premature labour, miscarriage and other serious complications.
  • Thyroid disorders can increase the chances of early menopause .

Is It Menopause Or Thyroid Disorder

Thyroid Misdiagnosis

Thyroid disorders can cause symptoms that are mistaken for those of a woman approaching menopause. Both menstrual cycle changes and mood changes can result from the menopausal transition or from thyroid conditions. Blood tests can determine which of these conditions is responsible for your symptoms. It’s also possible to have a combination of the two causes.

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How Is Thyroid Disease Diagnosed And Evaluated

Symptoms often prompt patients to visit the doctor, including fatigue, the inability to get pregnant, changes in the skin or hair, a lump in the neck, hoarseness or pain in the thyroid area. Based on these symptoms, a doctor will likely perform a physical exam to determine whether the thyroid is enlarged and order blood tests to measure thyroid hormone levels. If blood tests reveal signs of abnormal thyroid activity or thyroid cancer, further testing will be required, such as:

What Are The Signs And Symptoms Of Autoimmune Thyroid Disorders

You may have a goiter that feels like a lump on your neck. You may also have signs and symptoms of one or both conditions:

  • Hyperthyroidism:
  • Tremors and a fast heartbeat
  • Weight loss and hunger, even after you eat
  • Eyes that bulge
  • Weakness, muscle aches, or joint aches
  • Dry, flaky skin or thin and brittle fingernails or hair
  • Changes in your voice, such as hoarseness
  • Sudden weight gain
  • Sleepiness or problems thinking clearly
  • Slow heartbeat or trouble breathing
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    How Does My Thyroid Work

    The thyroid gland is a small, butterfly-shaped organ located in the front of your neck just under the voice box . Picture the middle of the butterflys body centered on your neck, with the wings hugging around your windpipe . The main job of the thyroid is to control your metabolism. Metabolism is the process that your body uses to transform food to energy your body uses to function. The thyroid creates the hormones T4 and T3 to control your metabolism. These hormones work throughout the body to tell the bodys cells how much energy to use. They control your body temperature and heart rate.

    When your thyroid works correctly, its constantly making hormones, releasing them and then making new hormones to replace whats been used. This keeps your metabolism functioning and all of your bodys systems in check. The amount of thyroid hormones in the bloodstream is controlled by the pituitary gland, which is located in the center of the skull below the brain. When the pituitary gland senses either a lack of thyroid hormone or too much, it adjusts its own hormone and sends it to the thyroid to balance out the amounts.

    If the amount of thyroid hormones is too high or too low , the entire body is impacted.

    Untreated Thyroid Disease Can Cause Serious Complications

    THYROID THURSDAY – How is Graves’ Disease Diagnosed?

    The thyroid gland affects various tissues and organs throughout the body, which means untreated thyroid disease can affect many different parts of your body. Mehmet Oz, MD, a cardiothoracic survey specialist and host of The Dr. Oz Show, says both hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism can have serious complications if left untreated.

    For hyperthyroidism, you may experience more heart problems, “like having a heart rhythm disorder called atrial fibrillation, which increases your risk of stroke and congestive heart failure,” he says. You may also be more prone to weakened bones, as well as bulging, red, or swollen eyes. Hyperthyroidism can also lead to “thyroid crisis,” which is a rare, but possibly life-threatening condition, Oz says.

    Meanwhile, hypothyroidism can also affect the heart and may be associated with an increased risk of heart disease and heart failure. Kroll says that “untreated underactive thyroid disease can also lead to severe depression, decreased mental status, hypothermia, and other symptoms related to the slowing of function in multiple organs.” And for more ways to measure your health, If You Can’t Do This in 90 Seconds, Your Heart Is in Danger, Study Says.

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    Hashimotos Disease Reduces Production Of Thyroid Hormones

    The thyroid gland makes two main hormones thyroxine and tri-iodothyronine . Two brain structures, the pituitary gland and the hypothalamus, regulate the hormones released by the thyroid gland. The steps in the process are:

    • The chain of command begins at the hypothalamus, which prompts the pituitary gland to make a chemical called thyroid-stimulating hormone .
    • The pituitary gland checks the amount of T4 and T3 in the blood and releases TSH if the T4 and T3 levels need to be topped up.
    • The thyroid gland secretes T4 and T3 depending on the order it receives from the pituitary gland. Generally speaking, the more TSH the thyroid receives, the more T4 and T3 it secretes.
    • The pituitary gland may order the thyroid gland to make T4 and T3 but, in the case of Hashimotos disease, the thyroid gland cant deliver.
    • The immune system creates antibodies that attack thyroid tissue. The thyroid gland becomes inflamed and thyroid cells become permanently damaged, which hampers the thyroids ability to make T4 and T3.
    • In response, the pituitary gland secretes more thyroid-secreting hormone .
    • The thyroid may enlarge as it attempts to obey the pituitary gland.

    If You Notice This On Your Nails Get Your Thyroid Checked Doctors Say

    Research says your nails could reveal one of the first signs of thyroid disease.

    Whether it’s a hang nail or chipped pinky nail, you probably brush most issues with your nails off as nothing more than life’s little annoyances. However, if you know where to look, your nails could actually be holding the key to how healthy one vital part of your body is. According to doctors, if you notice something in particular on your nails, you should get your thyroid checked. Read on to find out what you should be looking out for and for more symptoms to pay attention to, If You Feel This at Night, You Need to Get Your Liver Checked, Doctors Say.

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    How Do You Get Graves Disease

    Gravesdiseasedisease

    . In this regard, what is Graves disease and how do you get it?

    Gravesdisease is an autoimmune disorder that causes hyperthyroidism, or overactive thyroid. With this disease, your immune system attacks the thyroid and causes it to make more thyroid hormone than your body needs. The thyroid is a small, butterfly-shaped gland in the front of your neck.

    Also Know, can you die from Graves disease? Untreated Gravesdisease can lead to thyrotoxicosis and its severe form, thyroid storm, a life-threatening condition that causes eye and heart problems, weak and brittle bones, blood clots, strokes, and death.

    Furthermore, can Graves disease be cured?

    cure. All thyroid diseases can be treated, resulting in normal thyroid function. Radioactive iodine and surgery also cancure the hyperthyroidism by removing the thyroid. However, the thyroid stimulating antibodies often are unaffected by these treatments, so the underlying cause of Gravesdisease persists.

    How is Graves disease prevented?

    Eating berries can’t prevent Gravesdisease, but they can help protect your overall health. Whenever possible choose organic berries to lessen your exposure to pesticides and fertilizers, which will challenge your immune system. How much you need to eat: 1 or more servings a day.

    What Are The Risks Of Removing The Thyroid Gland

    How to Test Your Thyroid Function at Home

    Behind your childs thyroid gland runs the recurrent laryngeal nerves that help to move the vocal folds and the parathyroid glands which help regulate their bodys calcium levels.

    Some of the major risk factors following the removal of the thyroid gland are:

    • A hoarse/breathy voice.
    • Low calcium levels.

    After surgery your child will need to take a medication to supplement the thyroid function and in some cases a medication to keep calcium levels elevated.

    Other risk factors include:

    • A scar on the neck.
    • Bleeding.
    • Fluid collection under the skin.
    • The need for future procedures such as removal of the lymph nodes from the neck.

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    Can Hypothyroidism Be Prevented

    Hypothyroidism cannot be prevented. The best way to prevent developing a serious form of the condition or having the symptoms impact your life in a serious way is to watch for signs of hypothyroidism. If you experience any of the symptoms of hypothyroidism, the best thing to do is talk to your healthcare provider. Hypothyroidism is very manageable if you catch it early and begin treatment.

    Can Hypothyroidism Go Away On Its Own

    In some mild cases, you may not have symptoms of hypothyroidism or the symptoms may fade over time. In other cases, the symptoms of hypothyroidism will go away shortly after you start treatment. For those with particularly low levels of thyroid hormones, hypothyroidism is a life-long condition that will need to be controlled with medication on a regular schedule. It can be controlled very well and you can live a normal life with hypothyroidism.

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    Thyroid Disease: A Checklist Of Skin Hair And Nail Changes

    Although your thyroid gland sits deep in your neck, your dermatologist may be the first doctor to notice signs of thyroid disease. Thats because many signs and symptoms of thyroid disease develop on the skin, hair, and nails.

    The thyroid gland

    The thyroid is a butterfly-shaped gland in your neck that produces hormones, which play a key role in regulating your heartbeat, breathing, and many other functions.

    You, too, may also be able to spot thyroid disease, and thats important. Caught early, treatment can prevent complications. When thyroid disease goes untreated for years, it can lead to a dangerously slow heartbeat, an injury that refuses to heal, or unrelenting pain. You may have gained or lost weight for no apparent reason.

    To help you find early signs of thyroid disease on your skin, hair, and nails, heres a checklist.

    What Questions Should I Ask My Doctor

    How to Beat Hashimoto’s

    If you have thyroid cancer, you may want to ask your healthcare provider:

    • Why did I get thyroid cancer?
    • What type of thyroid cancer do I have?
    • Has the cancer spread outside of the thyroid gland?
    • What is the best treatment for this type of thyroid cancer?
    • What are the treatment risks and side effects?
    • Will I need thyroid replacement hormone therapy?
    • Is my family at risk for developing this type of thyroid cancer? If so, should we get genetic tests?
    • Can I get thyroid cancer again?
    • Am I at risk for other types of cancer?
    • What type of follow-up care do I need after treatment?
    • Should I look out for signs of complications?

    A note from Cleveland Clinic

    Receiving a cancer diagnosis is unsettling, regardless of the type. Fortunately, most thyroid cancers respond extremely well to treatment. Your healthcare provider can discuss the best treatment option for the type of thyroid cancer you have. After treatment, you may need to take synthetic thyroid hormones for life. These hormones support vital body functions. They usually dont cause any significant side effects, but youll have regular checkups to monitor your health.

    Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 08/13/2020.

    References

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    How Are Autoimmune Thyroid Disorders Treated

    • Thyroid medicines replace, increase, or decrease your thyroid hormone levels. They may also help control your signs and symptoms. You may need other medicines to treat fast heartbeats, nervousness, or trembling.
    • A radioactive form of iodine is given to treat hyperthyroidism. It damages or kills some of the thyroid gland cells.
    • Surgery to remove your thyroid may be needed if other treatments do not work.

    Thyroid Hormones Play A Role In Endometrial Health

    Although the underlying why is unknown, autoimmune thyroid disorders are associated with endometriosis. Women with endometriosis are at an increased risk for thyroid disease or dysfunction, and endometriosis patients who do suffer from thyroid dysfunction may have an increased risk of more intense chronic pain and increase endometriosis severity. Whether youre someone currently living with endometriosis, or showing symptoms of either endometriosis or thyroid dysfunction, its important to understand the connection between the two so you can continue to advocate for your health.

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    How Does Thyroid Disease Affect Pregnancy

    Pregnancy-related hormones raise the level of thyroid hormones in the blood. Thyroid hormones are necessary for the baby’s brain development while in the womb.

    It can be harder to diagnose thyroid problems during pregnancy because of the change in hormone levels that normally happen during pregnancy. But it is especially important to check for problems before getting pregnant and during pregnancy. Uncontrolled hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism can cause problems for both mother and baby.

    Hyperthyroidism that is not treated with medicine during pregnancy can cause:

    • Premature birth
    • a serious condition starting after 20 weeks of pregnancy. Preeclampsia causes high blood pressure and problems with the kidneys and other organs. The only cure for preeclampsia is childbirth.
    • Thyroid storm
    • Fast heart rate in the newborn, which can lead to heart failure, poor weight gain, or an enlarged thyroid that can make it hard to breathe
    • Low birth weight
    • Miscarriage

    Hypothyroidism Diagnosis And Treatment

    Signs of Hypothyroidism &  Hyperthyroidism

    Your doctor will perform blood tests to measure your TSH and thyroid hormone levels. A high TSH level and low thyroxine level could mean that your thyroid is underactive. These levels could also indicate that your pituitary gland is releasing more TSH to try to stimulate the thyroid gland to make its hormone.

    The main treatment for hypothyroidism is to take thyroid hormone pills. Its important to get the dose right, because taking too much thyroid hormone can cause symptoms of hyperthyroidism.

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    Who Is At Risk For Thyroid Cancer

    About three times as many women get thyroid cancer as men. The number of women with thyroid cancer is also going up. By 2020, the number of women with thyroid cancer is expected to double, from 34,000 women to more than 70,000 women.

    Thyroid cancer is more common in women who:

    • Are between the ages of 25 and 65
    • Had radiation therapy to the head or neck, especially in childhood, to treat cancer
    • Have a history of
    • Have a family history of thyroid cancer

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