Different types of glands in human body perform many important functions, out of which the thyroid is one of the most important glands of the body.
Found in the neck, it is responsible for the control of body temperature, heart activity, blood circulation, muscle mass and metabolic rate. According to research, diseases related to thyroids are more common in women as compared to men. Estimated, one out of eight women is a victim of thyroid disorder worldwide.
These views were expressed by Shaukat Khanum Memorial Cancer Hospital & Researche Centre Consultant Endocrinologist Dr Umal Azmat during media talked about the disease related to thyroid on Thursday. According to Dr Umal Azmat, “Thyroid function is directly linked with iodine which is an important nutritional element. This butterfly shaped gland is located in the neck near trachea and produce thyroid hormone which controls normal functioning of body.”
She added that “there are two major types of thyroid diseases, hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism. Symptoms of hyperthyroidism include; irregular heart rate, heat intolerance, nervousness, sleep disturbance, shortness of breath, increased bowel movements, fatigue, trembling hands, weight loss, muscle weakness, warm moist skin, hair loss, fluid retention, depression, decreased memory and concentration and delayed healing”.
Hyperthyroidism can further be diagnosed in different types in which most common disorder occurs due to grave disease. In graves diseases antibodies are produced which can affect thyroid gland and in this case thyroid may produce abnormally high level of hormones. This condition cans severely effects eyes of the patient. Other causes of hyperthyroidism include solitary or multiple nodules in the thyroid gland which produce abnormally high hormone. These are known as toxic nodules or toxic multi nodular goiter, she added.
The second major type of thyroid related disease is hypothyroidism. “This is basically a malfunction of the thyroid gland meaning the thyroid gland doesn’t produce enough thyroid hormones required for optimal functioning of the body. Thyroid hormone regulates growth and metabolism and a lack of these hormones causes the body to slow down which can cause coldness, aching limbs and muscles, dizziness, constipation and severe fatigue and many other symptoms,” she said.
Dr Azmat said, “Although thyroid disorder is not fatal but if it is left untreated it can damage different organs of body including heart. Negligence in this regard can increase the danger of heart failure.” Talking about the treatment procedures of the thyroid disorder, Dr Azmat added, “All types of thyroid disorders take different time span to be treated properly. Hypothyroidism can need lifelong treatment whereas hyperthyroidism can be treated in three different ways including medication, radioactive iodine and surgery but in most of the case patient is cured with proper medication and/or radioactive iodine,”
While talking about the treatment facility of thyroid disorder at Shaukat Khanum, Dr Azmat said, “It is to remind that thyroid disorders may re-occur after being occurred therefore repeated follow-ups needed. At SKMCH&RC, all types of thyroid disorders are treated including thyroid cancer. Additionally, facility of thyroid biopsy is also available at SKMCH&RC. We provide state-of-the-art treatment of thyroid cancer, hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism.”
Published in Daily Times, May 25th 2018.