What You Should Know About Autoimmune Thyroid Disorders: Symptoms, Diagnosis, and Treatment

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Autoimmune thyroid disorders are a set of conditions that arise when the body’s immune system mistakenly attacks the thyroid gland. Some of the most common autoimmune thyroid disorders include Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, which causes an underactive thyroid, and Grave’s disease, which causes an overactive thyroid.


People who have an autoimmune thyroid disorder may experience a wide range of symptoms, including fatigue, weight gain or loss, depression, and changes in heart rate and blood pressure. Other symptoms can include joint pain and swelling, dry skin, and intolerance to cold temperatures.

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Diagnosing an autoimmune thyroid disorder typically involves a physical examination, combined with a series of blood tests.These tests evaluate levels of TSH (Thyroid Stimulating Hormone) and thyroid hormones in the body, which can indicate an underactive or overactive thyroid. An ultrasound is also often used to help diagnose autoimmune thyroid disorders.

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Treatment for autoimmune thyroid disorders typically involves adjusting the level of thyroid hormone in the body by prescribing medication, such as levothyroxine, or by adding thyroid supplement to the patient’s diet. In some cases, surgery may be required. Regular monitoring of thyroid levels is also necessary to ensure that the treatment is effective and to adjust the treatment as needed.

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Managing an autoimmune thyroid disorder is important for long-term health. This includes following one’s prescribed treatment plan and maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Eating a nutritious diet, exercising regularly, managing stress, and avoiding triggering factors that can exacerbate the disorder, are all important steps towards managing the condition.