What is a hyper thyroid?

One of my close friends has a hyper thyroid! She wants to know…What are the symptoms, and what do you take for it? Shes been to the doctor and she wants to know more about it! Can it make it hard to get pregnant?


  • aWellWisher

    Increased activity of thyroid is called hyperthyroidism.
    In healthy people, the thyroid makes just the right amounts of two hormones, T4 and T3, which have important actions throughout the body. These hormones regulate many aspects of our metabolism, eventually affecting how many calories we burn, how warm we feel, and how much we weigh. In short, the thyroid "runs" our metabolism.
    These hormones also have direct effects on most organs, including the heart, which beats faster and harder under the influence of thyroid hormones. Essentially, all cells in the body will respond to increases in thyroid hormone with an increase in the rate at which they conduct their business.
    Hyperthyroidism is the medical term to describe the signs and symptoms associated with an over production of thyroid hormone.
    Hyperthyroidism is a condition caused by the effects of too much thyroid hormone on tissues of the body. Although there are several causes of hyperthyroidism, most of the symptoms patients experience are the same regardless of the cause (see the list of symptoms below).
    Because the body’s metabolism is increased, patients often feel hotter than those around them and can slowly lose weight even though they may be eating more. The weight issue is confusing sometimes since some patients actually gain weight because of an increase in their appetite. Patients with hyperthyroidism usually experience fatigue at the end of the day, but have trouble sleeping. Trembling of the hands and a hard or irregular heartbeat (called palpitations) may develop. These individuals may become irritable and easily upset. When hyperthyroidism is severe, patients can suffer shortness of breath, chest pain, and muscle weakness. Usually the symptoms of hyperthyroidism are so gradual in their onset that patients don’t realize the symptoms until they become more severe. This means the symptoms may continue for weeks or months before patients fully realize that they are sick. In older people, some or all of the typical symptoms of hyperthyroidism may be absent, and the patient may just lose weight or become depressed.
    Common symptoms and signs of hyperthyroidism
    •Heat intolerance
    •Increased bowel movements
    •Light or absent menstrual periods
    •Fast heart rate
    •Trembling hands
    •Weight loss
    •Muscle weakness
    •Warm moist skin
    •Hair loss
    •Staring gaze
    •There are readily available and effective treatments for all common types of hyperthyroidism. Some of the symptoms of hyperthyroidism (such as tremor and palpitations, which are caused by excess thyroid hormone acting on the cardiac and nervous system) can be improved within a number of hours by medications called beta-blockers (eg, propranolol; Inderal).
    •These drugs block the effect of the thyroid hormone but don’t have an effect on the thyroid itself, thus beta blockers do not cure the hyperthyroidism and do not decrease the amount of thyroid hormone being produced; they just prevent some of the symptoms. For patients with temporary forms of hyperthyroidism (thyroiditis or taking excess thyroid medications), beta blockers may be the only treatment required. Once the thyroiditis (inflammation of the thyroid gland) resolves and goes away, the patient can be taken off these drugs.
    •Anti-thyroid Drugs
    •For patients with sustained forms of hyperthyroidism, such as Graves’ disease or toxic nodular goiter, anti-thyroid medications are often used. The goal with this form of drug therapy is to prevent the thyroid from producing hormones.
    •Two common drugs in this category are methimazole and propylthiouracil (PTU), both of which actually interfere with the thyroid gland’s ability to make its hormones. Some hormone is made, but the thyroid becomes much less efficient. When taken faithfully, these drugs are usually very effective in controlling hyperthyroidism within a few weeks.
    •Radioactive Iodine Treatment
    •Radioactive iodine is the most widely-recommended permanent treatment of hyperthyroidism. This treatment takes advantage of the fact that thyroid cells are the only cells in the body which have the ability to absorb iodine. In fact, thyroid hormones are experts at doing just that.
    •By giving a radioactive form of iodine, the thyroid cells which absorb it will be damaged or killed. Because iodine is not absorbed by any other cells in the body, there is very little radiation exposure (or side effects) for the rest of the body. Radioiodine can be taken by mouth without the need to be hospitalized. This form of therapy often takes one to two months before the thyroid has been killed, but the radioactivity medicine is completely gone from the body within a few days. The majority of patients are cured with a single dose of radioactive iodine.
    •The only common side effect of radioactive iodine treatment is underactivity of the thyroid gland. The problem here is that the amount of radioactive iodine given kills too many of the thyroid cells so that the remaining thyroid does not produce enough hormone, a condition called hypothyroidism.There is no evidence that radioactive iodine treatment of hyperthyroidism causes cancer of the thyroid gland or other parts of the body, or that it interferes with a woman’s chances of becoming pregnant and delivering a healthy baby in the future. It is also important to realize that there are different types of radioactive iodine (isotopes). The type used for thyroid scans (iodine scans) give up a much milder type of radioactivity which does not kill thyroid cells.
    •Surgical Removal of the Gland or Nodule
    •Another permanent cure for hyperthyroidism is to surgically remove all or part. Surgery is not used as frequently as the other treatments for this disease. The biggest reason for this is that the most common forms of hyperthyroidism are a result of overproduction from the entire gland (Graves’ disease) and the methods described above work quite well in the vast majority of cases.
    About pregnancy- Untreated hyperthyroidism may cause infertility, after the patient is euthyroid by treatment, she may conceive. Treatment options need to be discussed if patient is ttc, as some tretments like radioactive iodine may affect the fetus.
    Hope it helps, all the best!

  • d'hneyOhara

    Hyperthyroidism is a condition in which the thyroid gland makes too much thyroid hormone. The condition is often referred to as an "overactive thyroid."


    Hyperthyroidism occurs when the thyroid releases too much of its hormones over a short (acute) or long (chronic) period of time.


    •Difficulty concentrating
    •Frequent bowel movements
    •GoiterGoiter (visibly enlarged thyroid gland) or thyroid nodulesthyroid nodules
    •Heat intoleranceHeat intolerance
    •Increased appetite
    •Increased sweating
    •Irregular menstrual periods in women
    •Weight loss (rarely, weight gain)\

    How the condition is treated depends on the cause and the severity of symptoms. Hyperthyroidism is usually treated with one or more of the following:

    •Antithyroid medications
    •Radioactive iodine (which destroys the thyroid and stops the excess production of hormones)
    •Surgery to remove the thyroid
    If the thyroid must be removed with surgery or destroyed with radiation, you must take thyroid hormone replacement pills for the rest of your life.

    Beta-blockers such as propranolol are used to treat some of the symptoms, including rapid heart rate, sweating, and anxiety until the hyperthyroidism can be controlled.

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