Hypothyroidism is one of the diseases related to the thyroid gland, common in many people. Besides, this disease is also the cause of serious complications, including death. Therefore, people should not be subjective when suffering from this disease as well as proactively treat the disease early.

Watching: What is hypothyroidism?

1. What is hypothyroidism

?Hypothyroidism is often described as a phenomenon of decreased thyroid function, also known as hypothyroidism. This condition is a form of hormone-related disease that causes the thyroid gland to malfunction because it does not produce enough hormones. In particular, some hormones are necessary for the body to carry out metabolism, including T3, T4 and Thyroxine.

Is hypothyroidism fatal?

At the same time, the control and regulation of body heat is also greatly affected. In fact, hypothyroidism is a very dangerous disease, but people still do not fully understand the serious nature of this disease. Although hypothyroidism can be prevented and treated, complications or death can occur in some cases.

2. Common symptoms in patients

According to doctors, patients with hypothyroidism in stage 1 are difficult to recognize because the initial symptoms are often very faint and unclear. In addition, this disease often begins in the elderly, so it is easy to be confused with the symptoms of old age. So to identify hypothyroidism can be based on what symptoms? Here are some suggestions to help you easily diagnose the disease:

Loss of appetite or loss of appetite when eating.

Patients often suffer from prolonged constipation

There are manifestations of depression accompanied by a decline in memory ability.

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Pale, pale skin color accompanied by a feeling of dryness and coldness.

Deeper voice – hoarse voice.

There is pain in the muscles or in the joints.

Patient has decreased interest in sex.

In addition to the above symptoms, patients who have progressed to the advanced stage may have some more serious symptoms. For example, having a large tongue (the tongue is quite large), myxedema (ie, only the face but not the hands and feet), dark skin color with rough spots due to the thickened horny layer.

3. Causes of disease

People often assume that hypothyroidism is caused by an iodine deficiency, but in reality this is just one of the less common causes in patients. In addition, hypofunction of the thyroid gland congenital or after some pathology related to the hypothalamus or pituitary gland is also a cause. However, these diseases are not the main causative agents. According to experts, common causes of hypothyroidism include:

Disease onset after treatment of hyperthyroidism.

Hashimoto’s condition – autoimmune thyroiditis.

Thyroid atrophy is also a cause

Thyroid atrophy is the most common cause in most patients.

In addition, people in high-risk groups are more likely to develop hypothyroidism. Typically as:

Women aged 60 and over: Although this condition can start at any age and gender, some studies show that the older a woman is, the more likely she is to get the disease.

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The patient has an autoimmune disorder.

Subjects have close relatives (grandfather, grandmother, father, mother) who have had autoimmune diseases.

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Patients with a history of treatment with iodine radiation therapy or use of drugs that suppress the thyroid gland.

The patient has had radiation to the upper chest or neck area.

The patient has a history of thyroid surgery.

Subjects were pregnant or gave birth within the last 6 months.

4. Methods of disease diagnosis

Because the signs of hypothyroidism are often difficult to identify, to accurately diagnose the patient’s condition, it is necessary to rely on clinical symptoms and laboratory results. So what are the clinical symptoms? What tests does the patient need? Here’s how to diagnose hypothyroidism:

4.1. Clinically

One of the common clinical manifestations in female patients is fatigue. Specifically, signs such as:

The face has many changes: more wrinkles appear on the skin, facial expressions are less expressive, the face is fuller and rounder. The eyelids are edematous, the cheekbones are purple, the lip color is less sharp and thicker. Tongue is enlarged due to infiltrated mucosa of the tongue. This manifestation is common in neonatal hypothyroidism, children and adolescents, less common in adults.

The face is fuller and rounder than usual

The fingers, toes, hands, and feet are larger and longer, so they often have difficulty folding. At the same time, the skin is colder, the tendons of the hands and feet are more prominent and yellow. Hair and nails show signs of hard, brittle edema accompanied by rough skin causing scabs. Besides, patients may feel their hair is dry and more prone to breakage.

Manifestations of decreased metabolism: body temperature is increased, decreased erratically due to the body’s ability to regulate water is disturbed. In addition, the patient also showed signs of weight gain despite loss of appetite or loss of appetite.

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Neuromuscular disorders: patients often feel tired, indifferent to everything, lose interest in activities related to mind, body or even sex. At the same time, the body has manifestations of autonomic disorders, such as decreased intestinal motility, frequent constipation, muscle pain – weakness, etc.

Endocrine gland changes: some female patients have menstrual irregularities or menorrhagia. Accompanied by a decline in the function of the adrenal gland.

4.2. About testing

To ensure accurate medical examination results, patients will be asked to perform a number of tests such as:

Measuring hormone levels: When the level of TSH hormone is too high, it will cause damage to the thyroid gland. In mild cases, they can also affect the pituitary gland and hypothalamus.

Test for TSH . hormone levels

Measure the level of Iodine 131 in the thyroid gland: usually lower than the prescribed level in normal people.

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Thyroid scintigraphy: this is a method to help accurately assess the function of the thyroid gland through images.

Although, hypothyroidism is not immediately fatal at the time of onset, but this pathology is also one of the factors that endanger the patient’s life. Therefore, people should not be subjective about this disease. Therefore, do not forget to share this useful information with your loved ones to easily recognize the disease!