Hypothyroidism during pregnancy

Hypothyroidism during pregnancy may be a serious condition and should not be overlooked. The condition can be caused due to different alteration related to the woman’s menstrual cycles. Menstrual cycle related symptoms may include abnormal conditions such as irregularity related to menses, unusually heavy menses and even missed menstrual cycles. If the condition of hypothyroidism turns severe, it may decrease the chances of the woman to bear a child. For a woman who is not able to become mother, it is essential to have a blood test and an appropriate evaluation of the thyroid gland to determine prevalence of any disease. In case if any issues with thyroid gland is detected, it can be treated easily if the thyroid gland is in underactive state. The thyroid gland can be treated through appropriate thyroid hormone replacement technique. These treatments are effective because hypothyroidism during pregnancy is due to deficiency of thyroid hormone.

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Though a lady may suffer from normal conditions of pregnancy there are also chances that these symptoms may also indicated possibilities of other physical abnormalities, including hypothyroidism. One of the biggest threats that act as a masquerader for pregnant women is the possibilities of thyroid issue. During the condition, the affected female may also suffer from signs such as tiredness, increase in weight, constipation, sleeplessness as well as lethargy. Most health experts, who are not aware of hypothyroidism or its prevalence in the female, may reassure her that this is the normal condition of healthy pregnancy. However one needs to be alert as these symptoms may also be a formidable sign of other possible disease and disorders.

It is essential to treat the disease timely as it is left untreated; it may lead to much more serious conditions during pregnancy. It is believed that symptoms and signs of hypothyroidism resembles signs of early pregnancy along with conditions such as weight loss etc., one may also have reduced ability to exercise. Hypothyroidism during pregnancy is in fact the inability to produce thyroid hormones through thyroid glands. Undiagnosed and untreated state may have irreversible adverse consequences on the fetus as well.

Frequency of hypothyroidism during pregnancy:

Hypothyroidism may be recorded in approx 1% to 3% cases of pregnancy. To your information, this condition may also be associated with other autoimmune physical disorders like diabetes. As the condition may cause difficulty related to ovulating it often results in problems during conceiving.

Symptoms of hyperthyroidism during pregnancy:

• Hindered or reduced intellect

• Hoarseness related to voice or changes in voice

• Goitre also known as Goiter

• Sleeplessness also known as insomnia

• Reduction in ability to exercise

• Lethargy

• Deep tendon reflex relaxation

• Difficulty while concentration

• Tiredness

• Constipation

• Cramps of muscles

• Hair thing and loss

• Dehydrated or dry skin

• Dramatic increase in weight

• Carpel tunnel syndrome

Complications of hypothyroidism during pregnancy:

There are numerous complications that may be resulted out of hypothyroidism experienced during pregnancy phase. Some of these complications may include:

• Unintentional abortion commonly known as miscarriage or stillbirth

• Preeclampsia ore Pre- eclampsia (abnormal pregnancy caused due to albuminuria, high blood pressure as well as retention of fluid)

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• State of prematurity

• Postnatal bleeding or hemorrhage

• Insignificant birth weight

• Placental abruption

• Restriction of intrauterine

• Congenital cretinism (including growth failure, mental retardation, hearing disability etc)

Possible causes of hypothyroidism during pregnancy:

Hashimoto’s thyroiditis is considered to be amongst one of the common causes of hyperthyroidism during pregnancy. During this condition the body generates antibody to counteract the thyroid gland malfunctioning it from generating hormones. However, it is widely believed that deficiency of iodine is the most common factor leading to hypothyroidism during pregnancy; this is perhaps because iodine plays a crucial role in generation of hormones. There are chances that viral infection or illness of thyroid gland may also lead to similar issue; this is scientifically known as subacute thyroiditis. Some addition causes may also include:

• Side effect of medication containing ferrous sulfate, rifampin etc

• Pituitary disease

• Hypothalamic disease

• Radioactive iodine treatment technique for Grave disease


Blood tests can be adopted to diagnose hypothyroidism during pregnancy. Elevated TSH (Thyroid stimulating hormone) is used to diagnose pregnant females as well as T4 or lo thyroid hormone level. One may also evaluate the level of antibody present in hormones; these antibodies may include antithyroglobulin, antithyroid peroxidase. It is essential to have an evaluation of antibodies as it may help in understanding the possibilities of complications during pregnancy as well as chances of postnatal thyroid dysfunction. The affected female may also suffer from goiter or prominent protrusion in the neck region. Prevalence of any autoimmune diseases increases the chances of getting affected by other diseases. Females suffering from Type 1 diabetes are 5% to 8% more prone to developing hypothyroidism during pregnancy as well as they are at 25% increased risk of postnatal thyroid disease.

Treatment of hypothyroidism during pregnancy:

It is strictly advice to avoid self decided treatment techniques without any expert’s assistance. This is a serious physical condition and one should seek medical attention through certified doctors. The treatment of the conditions is mainly focused on the root cause of the disease. The objective of the treatment is to substitute influential thyroid hormones with levothyroxine until the level of thyroid stimulating hormones reaches to the normal state. Every trimester of the pregnancy phase the levels are evaluated as there may be need of increased dosage. Incase it is determined that the condition has occurred due to deficiency of iodine, supplementing iodine does not helps in treating hypothyroidism during pregnancy but it also help after the delivery. It is essential to discuss your prescription of other drugs with your doctor, as having iron supplements or drug during pregnancy will make it difficult absorbing the supplemented thyroid hormones.

It should be known that hypothyroidism may also have adverse affects on the child such as multiple etiologies. It is essential to also appropriately diagnose the infant in the womb as hypothyroidism during pregnancy may also cause growth retardation in the fetus. Apart from having effects on the affected females, hypothyroidism during pregnancy may also cause mental retardation to the unborn child.

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