How Are Thyroid Disorders Diagnosed?

Hot Health
By Hot Health March 22, 2017 10:42

How Are Thyroid Disorders Diagnosed?

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Diagnosing Thyroid Disorders

Where is the thyroid gland located?

The thyroid is located in the neck; in front of the windpipe. It is a butterfly-shaped organ. The function of the thyroid gland is to produce hormones that regulate the rate at which the cells in the body cells utilize energy to generate heat (body temperature). If it becomes over or under active, the health of the body is severely affected.

The over activeness, that is the excessive production of the hormones, leads to a condition called hyperthyroidism. The under activeness of the gland, a reduced production of the hormones, leads to hypothyroidism. These thyroid disorders radically affect the health of a person and their different symptoms make the diagnosis hard to detect.

 

How are thyroid disorders diagnosed?

The physical and medical history of a person plays a very significant role in the diagnosis of thyroid levels. The first thing physicians do is check the body for tell-tale signs that point directly to a thyroid disorder.

Signs of underactive Thyroid: Individuals who have developed, or are at the verge of developing, hypothyroidism generally experience symptoms like intolerance towards cold, dry skin, sluggish body and a flimsy hair growth or unusual hair loss.

On the other end, individuals with hyperthyroidism witness symptoms such as increased metabolic rate leading to weight loss and excessive sweating and excessive heat in the body (always feeling hot). They may also experience an irregular heartbeat and trembling hands.

 

Blood Testing For Thyroid Disorders

When assessing levels of thyroid hormones in the body, the physician checks the blood of the individual for thyroid stimulating hormones. Based on the results found, various tests (for thyroxine (T4) and tri-iodothyronine (T3)) are suggested and medication is prescribed.

These tests help determine the rate and the status of the thyroid in the body. The pituitary gland controls and produces both T3 and T4 hormones. A normal functioning pituitary gland determines how much or how little of T3 and T4 are in the body and controls and produces accordingly.

Any abnormality found in the blood, further tests are performed to determine the cause(s) of this abnormality. Several tests are performed also to check whether the inflammation lies in the thyroid gland itself or just in its nodules.

For example, based on the blood test results, your doctor may diagnose you with Grave’s Disease if you have an over active thyroid (hyperthyroidism).

In addition to these, a fine-needle biopsy may also be performed to diagnose thyroid. This biopsy is used to distinguish malignant and benign nodules.

Ultrasonography is used to visualize the thyroid with the help of high-frequency sound waves instead of using radiation. Evaluating the nodules via a thyroid scan can also be utilized. This test can also include the injecting of a radioactive isotope into a vein following which a specialized camera is utilized to take images of the thyroid and remove radioactive thyroid from the blood.

These tests help the diagnostician in determining the cause of abnormalities in hormone production and figure out a solution, or medication, accordingly.

Hot Health
By Hot Health March 22, 2017 10:42
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