The Factors That Cause Hypothyroidism

Hypothyroidism is a relatively typical medical condition and it's estimated that 3% to 5% of the population have it. It is marked by a lack of thyroid hormones that may directly or indirectly include the thyroid gland. Here are a few of the main causes of hypothyroidism.

One of the main reason behind an under active thyroid is the genetic condition known as Hashimoto’s thyroiditis. It is an autoimmune disease wherein the immune system attacks the thyroid gland. Due to this, the thyroid gland becomes inflammed and has a decreased capability to generate thyroid hormones. Females are 5 to 10 times more likely to have Hashimoto’s thyroiditis than men, therefore making them a lot more prone to hypothyroiditis.

Iodine deficiency may also bring about hypothyroidism. Iodine is an crucial major component in the thyroid hormones thyroxine and triiodothyronine and thus deficiency of it in the body may cause problems in the generation of these necessary hormones.

Another root cause of an under active thyroid is a condition of the thyroid glands named lymphocytic thyroiditis. A white blood cell called lymphocyte leads to the inflammation of the thyroid glands. This is very frequent right after giving birth, affecting 8% of women soon after childbirth. The illness will be started by a hyperthyroid period in which the thyroid gland secretes excessive amounts of thyroid hormones. It is accompanied by the hypothyroid phase which can continue as much as half a year.

Ironically, a number of medical treatments may also trigger hypothyroidism. Iodine-131, a radioisotope of iodine that is used to treat a thyroid problem called Graves’ disease, can severely destroy the thyroid gland. Other drugs that are used to take care of hyperthyroidism may also result in hypothyroidism as well such as methimazole and propylthiouracil. The psychiatric medication lithium and medications containing considerable amounts of iodine like amiodarone and potassium iodide can also change the thyroid function, resulting in the hypothyroidism.

Hypothyroidism that indirectly involves the thyroid glands are called secondary and tertiary hypothyroidism. This occurs if there is problem in the pituitary glands and the hypothalamus, respectively, and so they cannot signal the thyroid glands to create sufficient hormones. This occurs when the pituitary glands cannot give off thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH), usually because of a tumor in the pituitary gland or the hypothalamus.

Diseases Associated With Hypothyroidism

Hyporthyroidism is a disease that's marked by inadequate output of thyroid hormones by the thyroid glands. Although iodine deficiency may cause this disorder, more often than not it's a result of an underlying illness. Most of them are autoimmune diseases, in which the immune system assaults the person’s own parts of the body, and in the case of hypothyroidism, the thyroid gland. Hypothyroidism is definitely a significant health issue since it includes other systems of the body. Below are a few of the diseases which are usually connected to hypothyroidism.

Graves’ disease is an autoimmune condition that is characterized by hyperthyroidism, the opposite condition of hypothyroidism, wherein the thyroid glands produces too much thyroid hormones. People that have Graves’ disease have a malfunctioning immune system that produces antibodies that mimic thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH), causing the thyroid gland to make too much. Treating Graves’ disease will involve the use of antithyroid medications, iodine-131 (a radioisotope of iodine), or thyroidectomy, which basically suppresses or totally eliminates the thyroid gland. This in turn will result in the hypothyroid state of those who have Graves’ disease.

Another autoimmune condition that is related to an under active thyroid is Hashimoto’s thyroiditis. It is among the most common cause of hypothyroidism in North America. In this ailment, the immune system directly attacks the thyroid gland, confusing it as a foreign body and triggering its destruction. In this case, antibodies such as leukocytes invade thyroid peroxidase, thyroglobulin, and TSH receptors. This may lead to the swelling and consequently, the destruction of the thyroid gland thus creating the hypothyroid condition. It is also theorized that this ailment is genetic.

An additional autoimmune disorder that is also connected along with hypothyroidism is Addison’s disease. Addison’s disease is an endocrine disorder wherein the adrenal glands produce insufficient levels of cortisol and aldosterone. Sometimes, this disorder occurs together with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis. This condition is called Schmidt’s syndrome. In addition to the symptoms of Addison’s disease and Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, individuals who have Schmidt’s syndrome can also acquire vitiligo, type 2 diabetes, myasthenia gravis, pure red cell aplasia, pernicious anemia, Graves’ disease, alopecia, sarcoidosis, or immunoglobulin A deficiency.

Newer Post Older Post