Pregnancy / Childbirth

Hyperthyroidism in pregnancy - symptoms and treatment

Hyperthyroidism in pregnancy - symptoms and treatment

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Hyperthyroidism in pregnancy occurs in about 0.1-0.4% of women. Requires careful monitoring. There are several forms of the disease, the most common type of hyperthyroidism (affecting 85% of future mothers) is Graves' disease. How to recognize and treat her?

What is hyperthyroidism in pregnancy?

Hyperthyroidism in pregnancy occurs when the gland is overactive, resulting in excess hormones in the blood. Another effect is hyperactivity of the body's metabolism.

Why is hyperthyroidism often revealed during pregnancy?

Pregnancy has a huge impact on the work of the thyroid gland. Hormonal fluctuations that arise during this particular period mean that the susceptible gland may not function properly. However, it is very important to carefully interpret your thyroid results during pregnancy. Some deviations from the norm are physiological.

Under the influence of chorionic gonadotropin (HCG) in the first trimester may occur subclinical hyperthyroidism, then, in subsequent trimesters, the TSH value usually returns to normal. Under the influence of the second hormone - estrogen - there is an increase in thyroid hormone binding proteins, which increases the total amount of thyroid hormones in the blood. This is because 99% of thyroid hormones bind to these proteins.

Does the thyroid gland grow pregnant?

Some women get it physiological enlargement of the thyroid gland in pregnancy. Usually the change is small, because the gland is estimated to increase by 10-15%. During the medical examination such a small thyroid enlargement is not noticeable and does not require treatment.

Where does hyperthyroidism occur in pregnancy?

The most common cause of hyperthyroidism in pregnancy is Graves' disease. Classified as an autoimmune disease, that is, in which the immune system mistakenly identifies the threat and turns against itself.

Researchers speculate that this abnormality is caused by antibodies that over-stimulate the thyroid gland, which results in the production of too many hormones.

The disease is most often genetic, it occurs in the family.

What are the symptoms of hyperthyroidism?

  • weakness,
  • nervousness,
  • anxiety,
  • feeling hot, sweating too much
  • increase in heart rate (over 100 per minute),
  • weight loss or no weight gain
  • thyroid enlargement, which may cause bulging in the neck, goiter,
  • staring eyes.

Is the child dependent on the mother? That is, when the fetus develops a thyroid gland

For the first 10-12 weeks of pregnancy, the baby is fully dependent on the mother for thyroid hormone production. At the end of the first trimester, the thyroid gland begins to produce hormones by itself. However, the relationship between the child and mother still exists and is strong and requires the mother to consume the right amount of iodine. According to the World Health Organization, you should take 200 mg of iodine daily during pregnancy. For most women, a standard diet provides the right amount of iodine. Supplementation is not necessary.

Hyperthyroidism in pregnancy should be treated

Hyperthyroidism in pregnancy requires treatment. Left alone, it is dangerous for children and the mother. In the case of a woman, it can lead to hypertension and metastatic hypertrophy, in the case of a child, intrauterine growth retardation and the birth of a small child often occur.

Treatment usually requires taking medicines that are tailored to the needs of the individual.


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