Facts about Thyroid Issues during Pregnancy
Thyroid disease is common in pregnancy. Thyroid is located in front of women’s neck and is responsible to release hormones which regulate metabolism of body, body weight, heart system, nervous system and body temperature.
If you had thyroid disease from before pregnancy you must mention it to doctor. Thyroid disease particularly hyperthyroidism has symptoms similar to pregnancy. So it is sometimes difficult to guess thyroid problem. Now a days all doctors recommend thyroid test in early pregnancy and may repeat during pregnancy to make sure you have not developed any thyroid problem. If you are experiencing unexpected weight loss and/or vomiting then consult your doctor quickly.
Effect of Thyroid Disease on baby
If thyroid disease is not treated during pregnancy then it may lead to following health issues in baby:
1. Premature Birth
3. Low birth weight
4. Increase in mother’s Blood Pressure
Causes of Thyroid Disease in Pregnancy
Hyperthyroid caused during pregnancy is mostly due to body makes an antibody called TSI-thyroid stimulating immunoglobulin. It causes thyroid to make unnecessary hormones.
Most common cause of hypothyroidism is body mistakenly attacks thyroid gland cells. And it affects thyroid efficiency to make hormones due to less or no cells and enzymes.
Symptoms of Thyroid Disease in Pregnancy
Symptoms of Hyperthyroidism
• Increased heart rate, Nervousness
• Sensitivity to hot temperatures
• Irregular heartbeat
• Severe nausea or vomiting
• Slight tremor
• Sleeping troubles
• Unexpected Weight loss or low weight gain
Symptoms of Hypothyroidism
• Extreme tiredness
• Unexpected weight gain
• Sensitivity to cold temperatures
• memory problems
• Difficulty concentrating or
• Muscle cramps
Thyroid Treatment during Pregnancy
Your doctor will prescribe you an anti-thyroid medication which will reduce the hormone production by thyroid. In worst case if medications have no effect then only surgery is done to remove part of thyroid.
Women who develop hyperthyroid in pregnancy may face more trouble after 3 month of baby birth. In such cases your doctor will increase the dose.
Doctors prescribe an artificial hormone known as levothyroxine. It is similar to natural hormones produced by thyroid. While monitoring the situation doctor will adjust this dose. Throughout pregnancy your thyroid test will be conducted at an interval of 4-5 weeks
Please note calcium and iron supplements may affect absorption of thyroid hormone in body. So check with doctor for a required interval between these supplements and thyroid medications.
Hyperthyroidism is seen very common in Indian women. Also weight gain after delivery is main trouble caused by this disease. Consult your doctor in time to avoid long time health issues. Take care.