Effects of Hyperthyroidism and Pregnancy

Effects of Hyperthyroidism and Pregnancy

Hyperthyroidism is a condition when the thyroid gland in our body overproduces two hormones – T3 and T4. The thyroid gland controls our metabolism and the hormones produced by the thyroid have a vital role to play in practically everything our body does, especially the functioning of the nervous system.

When a person has hyperthyroidism, the excess hormones secreted cause pretty much the same effect as a load of adrenaline dumped into our blood stream – the heart speeds up, you breathe faster and everything in your body speeds up including your digestive system. The effects of hyperthyroidism in women can sometimes mimic the signs exhibited during pregnancy. If you are pregnant, you should get yourself checked for this condition – hyperthyroidism and pregnancy don’t mix, you want your baby to be safe at all costs.

The probability of a pregnant woman being diagnosed with hyperthyroidism is about 0.2%. When you are pregnant, trying to spot symptoms of hyperthyroidism can be confusing – but on no account should you neglect the condition. Untreated hyperthyroidism during pregnancy may result in the baby having hyperthyroidism as well, especially if the mother has severe hyperthyroidism. If you don’t have this condition treated this is what can happen –

Anemia – Iron deficiency is a well-known effect of this disease. You run the risk of contacting severe anemia and this certainly will not be good for the baby.

Infection – Hyperthyroidism in mothers-to-be puts them at increased risk when it comes to infections. Any infection you get is bound to be transmitted to your baby and must be avoided at all costs.

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Pre-eclampsia – Hyperthyroidism can cause high blood pressure in the mother-to-be and this can endanger both the mother and baby. This is usually accompanied by an excess of protein in the urine and can pose a significant threat to the mother and baby.

Risk Factor – This condition causes an increased risk of miscarriage, birth defects, and small or premature baby.

However, hyperthyroidism can be treated with appropriate medication or surgical procedure even during pregnancy. So, in case of hyperthyroidism and pregnancy occurring at the same time in a woman, treatment is possible and effects may be seen in a few weeks. The medication needs to be continued after delivery, too.