Tags: Thyroid Disorders | hyperactive | thyroid | graves disease

Diagnosed With Hyperactive Thyroid? You May Have Graves' Disease

By    |   Monday, 09 May 2016 05:40 PM

Hyperactive thyroid, also called hyperthyroidism, is a condition in which your thyroid gland produces too much thyroid hormone, speeding up your body’s metabolism. The thyroid gland controls many bodily functions and hyperthyroidism is a condition that must be medically treated once diagnosed.

By far, the most common cause of hyperactive thyroid is an autoimmune disease called Graves’ disease. According to Mayo Clinic, some antibodies produced in your immune system usually function to protect the body by attacking foreign viruses and bacteria that don’t belong. With Graves’ disease, these antibodies mistakenly attack the thyroid gland, stimulating it to produce more T3 and T4, the two important thyroid hormones.

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The cause of Graves’ disease is not well-understood, but a genetic predisposition is likely to blame for some patients.

Endocrine Web says hyperactive thyroid caused by Graves’ disease results in many troubling physical symptoms. Many patients experience excessive sweating and intolerance to heat, anxiety and tremors, shortness of breath, heart palpitations, weight loss despite an increased appetite, muscle weakness, insomnia, and more frequent bowel movements consistent with a fast metabolism.

According to the American Thyroid Association, Graves’ disease is the only type of hyperactive thyroid that can result in symptoms involving the eyes. Many patients with Graves’ disease will at some point experience inflammation and discomfort in the eyes.

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Less commonly, some patients will experience more severe symptoms, particularly if the hyperactive thyroid condition is left untreated. For example, some patients develop redness and bulging of the eyes due to inflammation behind the eyeball, and some will develop blurred or double vision.

Symptoms of the eyes with Graves’ disease are much more common and more severe for patients who smoke cigarettes.

Graves’ disease can be diagnosed first by blood tests that confirm high levels of thyroid hormones in the blood and possibly followup tests that look for high levels of certain antibodies.

Endocrine Web says treatment options for hyperactive thyroid include drugs that slow down the production of thyroid hormones, radioactive iodine therapy, and possibly surgery to remove part of the thyroid gland.

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Hyperactive thyroid, also called hyperthyroidism, is a condition in which your thyroid gland produces too much thyroid hormone, speeding up your body's metabolism.
hyperactive, thyroid, graves disease
Monday, 09 May 2016 05:40 PM
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