Hyperthyroidism can cause a number of serious symptoms. It can cause your heart to beat too fast, and it can cause arrhythmias.
Hyperthyroidism can also cause weight loss and difficulty sleeping. However, the most serious symptom of hyperthyroidism is something called a thyrotoxic crisis. This can lead to a very rapid pulse, increased fever and delirium.
If you suffer from hyperthyroidism then you need to be aware of your treatment options. Your doctor will need to perform specific tests to determine the exact cause of the hyperthyroidism. Once the cause is determined then specific treatment can begin.
One thing your doctor may do is prescribe beta blockers for you. These are heart medications that are used to keep your rapid heart rate under control. The beta blockers may be used until the hyperthyroidism is cured.
One treatment for hyperthyroidism is drug therapy with anti-thyroid medications. These medications will actually prevent the thyroid from producing hormones. Two of the most common drugs in this category are Methimazole and propylthiouracil. If taken as directed, these two medications can produce an improvement is symptoms in as little as two weeks. Anti-thyroid medications can have side effects such as itching, rash or fever.
The most widely recommended type of hyperthyroidism treatment is radioactive iodine. Since the thyroid cells are the only cells in the body that will absorb iodine this treatment is very successful. Radioactive iodine may be taken by mouth without the need for hospitalization. The thyroid will absorb the iodine and the radioactivity will kill the thyroid gland.
It usually takes about two months before the thyroid has been killed but the radioactive medicine usually leaves the body in about two or three days.. The downside to this type of treatment is that once the thyroid is killed you will need to take hormone replacement for the rest of your life because you no longer have a hormone producing thyroid gland.
Another treatment for hyperthyroidism that is not commonly used is the surgical removal of part or all of the thyroid gland. Most thyroid surgeries these days only require a twenty three hour hospital stay with some thyroidectomies being sent home the same day as the surgery.
There are some risks with this type of surgery. There is a slight risk of damage to the nearby vocal cords or the parathyroid glands. You also will have a small risk for infection or other complications associated with surgical procedures.
Most of the time the treatment for hyperthyroidism is a simple one. Your doctor can advise you on the best treatment for your type of hyperthyroidism.
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