Wondering if the thyroid is curable or not? Not sure about the symptoms? Before discussing these points let us know, what is thyroid gland and what are the diseases related to it.
What Is Thyroid Disease?
Thyroid disease is any disorder caused by the ill functioning of the thyroid gland. The thyroid gland is situated in the in the throat right below the voice box or Adam’s apple. It secretes two hormones, namely, triiodothyronine (T3) and thyroxine (T4). For the secretion of these hormones, the gland uses iodine.
The function of the T3 and T4 is to regulate the metabolic processes in the body. Therefore, the ill functioning of this gland results in a number of disorders, which are listed below:
- Thyroid cancer
- Thyroid cysts/nodules
What Causes These Disorders?
Hypothyroid is a very common disease caused by the insufficient production of thyroid hormones or under activity of thyroid gland and results in a number of harmful disorders. The early symptoms can include the following:
- Weight gain excess
- Swelling in the legs
- Joint pain
- Brittle fingernails
- Sensitivity to cold
Its later stage effects include:
- Poor mental health
- Increased risk of heart attack
- Increase in blood pressure
- Stones in the gallbladder
- Disturbed menstrual cycle and fertility levels
- Dry skin
- Hair thinning
Hyperthyroid is rare as compared to the hypothyroidism and is caused due to overproduction of the thyroid hormones. The early symptoms include:
- Excessive weight loss (unintentional)
- Excessive sweating
- Increased heart rate
- Heat intolerance
- Excess urination
- Excess thirst
Thyroid cancer is a common disease caused because of genetic mutation of cells in the thyroid gland. They are of four types- papillary, follicular, anaplastic, and medullary cancer with papillary cancer being the most popular one. These cells start multiplying within the gland and spread cancer. However, the diagnosis of this cancer in the early stage is difficult due to fewer symptoms the later symptoms are:
- Enlargement of the thyroid gland
- Formation of nodes or cysts in the thyroid gland
- Prolonged cough
- Hoarseness in voice
Read more on effective diet therapy during cancer
Can Thyroid Diseases be cured/reversed OR are they lifelong diseases?
The common person tends to believe the hyped up stories presented to them rather than the logical facts. Thyroid has been looked into as an incurable disorder that lasts for life and sometimes considered to be life-threatening. Several studies and research have been conducted in order to find cures to the disorders caused by the dysfunction of thyroid gland it can be safely said that given the disorders are diagnosed at an early stage, all thyroid disorders are treatable.
For hypothyroidism, the most common treatment is thyroid hormone replacement. In other words, artificial thyroxine is injected into the body to maintain the normal levels of the hormone. The treatment usually continues lifelong and does not have any significant side effects usually.
Hyperthyroid on the other hand can be treated in a number of ways.
Radioactive iodine is used in careful amounts to regulate hyperthyroidism by destroying parts of the thyroid gland and usually, this treatment cures the problem effectively. However, the amounts should be calculated in order to avoid the problem of hypothyroidism.
Regular iodine can also be used to block the excess production of thyroid hormones and thus help to maintain the hormone levels.
Anti-thyroid medications are another option for people suffering from hyperthyroidism. These medications bring the hormone levels under control in around a month or two by decreasing the production of the hormone.
Thyroidectomy is a surgery, which involves removal of the thyroid gland followed by lifelong injection of hormones to avoid hypothyroidism. This is useful when the cells in the gland turn cancerous or if the hyperthyroidism causes obstruction to breathing.
Thyroid cancers can be treated using one or more or a combination of the methods suggested above if diagnosed at an early stage.
All the disorders related to the thyroid gland can be treated when diagnosed properly and timely. These disorders are not life threatening and can be reversed. So, folks! No need to worry about the so-called deadly disease thyroid. Awareness is the key to the cure. Keep reading and stay aware as well as healthy!