Understanding the Risks of Graves’ Disease and Heart Health
Graves’ disease, also known as hyperthyroidism, is an autoimmune disorder that affects the thyroid gland. The syndrome of Graves’ disease produces a variety of physical and psychological symptoms, including serious and potentially fatal complications on cardiac health. It is essential to understand the risks associated with Graves’ disease and the symptoms that can indicate a severe case of Graves’ disease.
What is Graves’ Disease?
Graves’ disease is an autoimmune disorder of the thyroid gland, in which antibodies are produced in excessive quantity. These antibodies overstimulate the thyroid and result in the production of too much thyroid hormone, which is known as hyperthyroidism. This overactive thyroid, can cause several physical and mental problems, including changes to heart health.
Risks and Complications of Graves’ Disease on Heart Health
Graves’ disease can cause complications in the heart and increase the risk of developing conditions like arrhythmia, congestive heart failure, and cardiomyopathy.
- Arrhythmia – A heart rhythm disorder that can cause an irregular pulse or skipped beats.
- Congestive Heart Failure (CHF) – Occurs when the heart does not pump enough blood to the organs.
- Cardiomyopathy – A type of heart damage that affects the heart’s ability to pump blood.
Graves’ disease can also lead to a thickening of the heart valves, which can lead to chest pain, shortness of breath and fluid build up in the lungs. If left untreated, this enlarging of the heart valves can lead to valvular heart disease, which is a potentially life-threatening condition.
Prevention and Management
Early detection and proper management of Graves’ disease is the first step in minimizing its effects on heart health. Blood tests and imaging tests such as echocardiograms can help diagnose an overactive thyroid at an early stage, and there are effective treatments available for Graves’ disease that can help control symptoms and minimize further complications.
It is essential for people with Graves’ disease to take steps to reduce their risk of developing heart-related problems. Research shows that lifestyle factors such as getting regular exercise, eating a balanced diet, reducing stress, and managing diabetes can all help reduce the risk of heart disease in Graves’ disease patients.
Graves’ disease can cause serious complications, including damage to the heart. It is essential to understand the risks and symptoms of Graves’ disease and to take steps to reduce the risk of developing cardiovascular complications. Early detection, proper management, and lifestyle modifications can help minimize the effects of Graves’ disease onheart health.