HEALTH FEATURE ARCHIVE
Hashimoto's thyroiditis attacks the immune system and destroys the thyroid gland. The thyroid helps set the rate of metabolism - the rate at which the body uses energy. Hashimoto's prevents the gland from producing enough thyroid hormones for the body to work correctly.
Here are some more facts about Hashimoto's thyroiditis and women:
- Hashimoto's thyroiditis, affects women 50 times more often than men.
- Although Hashimoto's thyroiditis can affect people of all ages, it is most common in women in their 30s and 40s.
- Hashimoto's thyroiditis is the most common cause of hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid).
- Automimmune disorders that occur with increased frequency in patients with Hashimoto's thyroiditis include insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus, myasthenia gravis, celiac disease, pernicious anemia, vitiligo, rheumatoid arthritis, systemic lupus erythematosus, scleroderma, primary biliary cirrhosis, dermatitis herpetiformis, and Sjogren's syndrome.
Portions of the above information has been provided with the kind permission of The National Women's Health Information Center.