Unexplained weight loss despite an increased appetite
Lumpy, red thickening of the skin in front of the shins
You will be asked about your symptoms and medical history. A physical exam will be done.
Tests may include:
to measure level of thyroid hormones and look for thyroid antibodies
Radioactive iodine uptake test to measure how much iodine the thyroid gland absorbs over the course of several hours
Treatment will depend what is causing the hyperthyroidism. It will also be adjusted if you are pregnant. Talk to your doctor about the best treatment options for you.
Antithyroid medicine will reduce thyroid activity. Smoking can interfere with some of the medications. If you smoke, talk to your doctor about how you can successfully
All theses medications can cause a rash, fever and painful joints. Serious adverse reactions include increased risk of infection and liver damage.
If the disease goes into remission, you may no longer need medication.
This type of medication can relieve rapid heart rate and nervousness.
is taken orally. It is then absorbed by the thyroid gland. Once there, it damages most of the thyroid cells. These cells can no longer produce thyroid hormones. Within days, the excess iodine passes out of the body in the urine or changes into a nonradioactive state. This treatment reduces the activity of the thyroid. Sometimes the treatment can decrease the thyroid levels too much. In this case, you will need to take a daily thyroid hormone replacement.
is uncommon for the treatment of hyperthyroidism. It will remove part or all of the thyroid. It may be an option when medical therapy fails.
After a thyroidectomy, you may need to take daily thyroid, calcium, or vitamin D supplements.
If there are eye symptoms like dry red eyes or double vision, your doctor may prescribe:
Eye protection before sleep
You may be referred to an eye specialist.
There are no current guidelines to prevent hyperthyroidism.
Shomon M. Frequently asked questions on Graves disease & hyperthyroidism. Thyroid-Info website. Available at: http://www.thyroid-info.com/articles/hyperthyroidism-faq.htm. Accessed December 15, 2017.
Van Geest RJ, Sa sim IV, Koppeschaar HP, et al. Methylprednisolone pulse therapy for patients with moderately severe Graves orbitopathy: a prospective, randomized, placebo-controlled study. Eur J Endocrinol. 2008;158(3):229-237.
1/30/2009 DynaMed Plus Systematic Literature Surveillancehttp://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T115280/Graves-disease-in-adults: Nyirenda MJ, Taylor PN, Stoddart M, Beckett GJ, Toft AD. Thyroid-stimulating hormone-receptor antibody and thyroid hormone concentrations in smokers vs nonsmokers with Graves disease treated with carbimazole. JAMA. 2009;301(2):162-164.
Last reviewed November 2018 by
EBSCO Medical Review Board
Marcie L. Sidman, MD
Last Updated: 8/16/2019
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