What should I know about thyroid disorders?

What is the thyroid gland?

The thyroid gland makes and stores hormones that help regulate the heart rate, blood pressure, body temperature, and the rate at which food is converted into energy. Thyroid hormones are essential for the function of every cell in the body. They help regulate growth and the rate of chemical reactions (metabolism) in the body. Thyroid hormones also help children grow and develop.

What are the specific types of thyroid diseases and conditions?

Types of thyroid problems include hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid) that can causes Grave's disease, hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid), Hashimoto's thyroiditis, goiters, nodules, and cancer.

What are thyroid hormones? What do they do?

The thyroid uses iodine, a mineral found in some foods and in iodized salt, to make its hormones. The two most important thyroid hormones are thyroxine (T4) and triiodothyronine (T3). Thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH), which is produced by the pituitary gland, acts to stimulate hormone production by the thyroid gland.

The thyroid gland also makes the hormone calcitonin, which is involved in calcium metabolism and stimulating bone cells to add calcium to bone.
The thyroid gland is controlled by the pituitary gland and hypothalamus. Diseases and conditions effect thyroid function, which causes thyroid problems.

What exams, procedures, and tests diagnose thyroid disorders?

A doctor or other healthcare professional will take your medical history and give you a physical exam. Specialized tests are used to diagnose thyroid disorders. Blood tests may be used help diagnose thyroid problems. Usually, imaging tests like ultrasound, radioactive thyroid scans, and fine needle aspiration and biopsy of the thyroid gland are techniques ordered to measure levels of thyroid hormones and TSH in the blood.

What natural home remedies and supplements treat thyroid problems?

Supplements that contain large amounts of iodine such as seaweed can make thyroid hormone levels go very high or very low if you have nodular goiter and a history of an autoimmune thyroid condition such as Hashimoto's thyroiditis or Graves' disease.

There is no scientific evidence that herbal supplements, yoga poses, natural thyroid treatments, or natural thyroid remedies improve thyroid health and function. Dietary supplements are not regulated by any agency and therefore there is no quality control of these supplements. It is not recommended that any supplement be taken for thyroid health.

Don't take supplements for your thyroid problem without consulting a doctor.

QUESTION

Where is the thyroid gland located? See Answer

What is the treatment for thyroid disorders?

Treatment for thyroid diseases and conditions depend on the type of problem you have. Usually, thyroid problems can be treated with medications or, in some cases, surgery, for example, thyroid cancer.

What is the prognosis for thyroid problems? Can they be permanently cured?

Usually, most people with thyroid disorders can manage the type of disorders signs and symptoms. Untreated thyroid problems are not lief threatening. Some problems may require surgery. The prognosis for most people with thyroid cancer is good, although some people with thyroid cancer that has spread throughout the body have a poorer prognosis.

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Medically Reviewed on 1/30/2019
References
Thyroid cancer. American Cancer Society. 2019.
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