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Thyroid Diseases During Pregnancy

Written and reviewed by
Dr. Surekha Jain 93% (1486 ratings)
MS, MBBS
Gynaecologist, Delhi  •  45 years experience
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Causes, symptoms and diagnosis of Thyroid

Hello friends. I am Dr. Surekha Jain practicing as a gynecologist and obstetrician since last 40 years. I own my own hospital at Shalimar Bagh with the name of Jain Child and Maternity Hopsital Pvt. Ltd. I am also attached with the Fortis Hospital, Shalimar Bagh as a Senior Gynecologist and Obstetrician. Today, I am planning to tell you about Thyroid Diseases during Pregnancy. The reason for choosing this topic is that it is very common nowadays to find thyroid disease during pregnancy and the smallest variation in the thyroid organ can really affect your pregnancy. The thyroid disease is present in two forms: Hyperthyroidism and Hypothyroidism. Hyperthyroidism means over active thyroid and Hypothyroidism means which is under active thyroid.

Thyroid is an organ which is located in the front of your organ like a butterfly and it releases hormones which control metabolism of your body it controls even single cell of your body. Thyroid affects the whole body. During pregnancy, why we are worried about the thyroid disease that if you already know that you have hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism at the very first consultation of your pregnancy, you should tell your obstetrician that you are either Hyperthyroid or hypothyroid and what drugs you are already taking. So that the doctor can help you adjust those medications. In case you do not know the status of your thyroid at very first visit the doctor will you investigations to be done and thyroid status is one of them.

Why is it so important to do early? Because the thyroid functions are more important in the first trimester of pregnancy to control the development of the baby. You very well know that during the very first three months of your pregnancy, the child being made, all the organs, all the systems are developed and after that the child only grows inside so the first three months are very crucial. And thyroid controls the activities in the mother and the baby. So, you should know the status of thyroid. Now, let us know what are the most important irregularities you can have in thyroid? Hyperthyroidism, even though it is rare, in early pregnancy signs and symptoms they quite mimic hyperthyroidism like excessive vomiting, nausea, irritability, giddiness and irregular heartbeat, even nervousness. So, these are very common in pregnancy as well as in hyperthyroidism.

So, if they are in a moderate amount, you can think of having these symptoms because of pregnancy. But, in case there is excessive, your doctor will definitely test you for hyperthyroid by doing certain blood tests and manage you accordingly on anti-thyroid drugs. The second most important is hypothyroidism. Hypothyroidism being more common than hyperthyroidism, therefore, it is very important to manage hypothyroidism in early pregnancy. In first, seven to nine weeks, the fetus doesn’t have any thyroid function in itself. So whatever it is getting it is from the mother. If the mother is deficient, the child will also become deficient and later on it can have multiple problems of nervous system, skeletal system, and developmental problems. Now, how do you diagnose the thyroid disease? It is very simple. Only by blood test you can diagnose thyroid. Three blood tests are there, TSH (Thyroid Stimulating Hormone), T3 and T4. These are the hormones which are released by thyroid and thyroid stimulating hormone is the controlling hormone which keeps adjusting itself according to the hormone. Only by test you can come to know whether you are youth thyroid that is normal thyroid or you are hypothyroid or hyperthyroid.

If thyroid is not controlled properly during pregnancy then there can be multiple things which can happen to the mother and the baby. Now, if it not controlled in the first trimester, then developmental problems can be there. Baby can have certain congenital birth defects but later on it can lead to prematurity, and high blood pressure. Now, how can you come to know you are suffering from symptoms only? Hyperthyroidism can lead to severe nausea, vomiting, and slight tremors in your body, trouble sleeping, weight loss, or low weight for pregnant women. How can you know about hypothyroidism? Symptoms of hypothyroidism are such as extreme tiredness, weight gain, confusion, constipation, concentration and memory problems.

So, once your doctor knows whether you are hypo or hyper, they will treat you accordingly. If you want to know more, you can contact me through Lybrate, Dr. Surekha Jain. I am a certified thyroid disease treatment giver to the patients so you can contact me by chat, telephone, by putting your questions directly to me through Lybrate. They know my telephone number, my address. You can contact me, come to me, you can chat with me and even have video chat with me. Thank you.

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