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What Is Hypothyroidism?

Hypothyroidism is a relatively common disorder. Millions of people suffer from hypothyroidism, and many don’t know it. This condition is caused by an underactive thyroid glance, which does not produce enough thyroid hormone. This often affects various aspects of the patient’s overall health, including body temperature, heart rate, and the metabolism.

Symptoms associated with hypothyroidism include:

  • Fatigue / exhaustion
  • Sensitivity to cold
  • Enlarged thyroid gland
  • Constipation
  • Dry / pale skin
  • Sudden weight gain
  • Hair loss
  • Brittle nails

More women are affected by hypothyroidism than men—especially older women. In fact, it is estimated that about 1 in 8 women aged 35 to 65 has hypothyroidism. If you believe that you or someone you know may suffer from an underactive thyroid, there are treatments available. Contact your doctor at Washington Township Medication Foundation to schedule an appointment.

Hashimoto’s Disease: Cause & Treatment

In many cases, hypothyroidism is caused by a condition known as Hashimoto’s disease. Hashimoto’s disease is an autoimmune disorder, in which the immune system attacks the thyroid gland, inflaming and damaging the tissue, which impacts the thyroid’s ability to produce hormones. There is no exact known cause for this condition. It is thought to be the result of a variety of factors, including genetic predisposition.

Typically, Hashimoto’s disease is diagnosed via a blood test that looks at your body’s thyroid hormone and thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) levels. Your doctor will make a recommendation as to whether or not medication is necessary. If you have been diagnosed with Hashimoto’s disease but your thyroid is still working properly and you do not have a hormone imbalance, your doctor may encourage you to hold off from taking medications and instead to continue monitoring your condition. If medications are necessary, you will likely need to continue taking those medications for the rest of your life.

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