(g) These signs/symptoms can increase in intensity suddenly. This
condition is called Thyroid storm. It is dangerous and can be fatal. Signs and
symptoms can be accompanied by extreme irritability, hypertension, tachycardia,
vomiting, and a temperature up to 106 F. Final stages include delirium followed by
A nodular (lumpy) goiter with no exophthalmos (protruding eyeball) indicates
Plummers' disease. This condition is less dangerous than Graves' disease.
(a) Primary treatment for hyperthyroidism. The two main types of
treatment are antithyroid drugs and surgery. Method of treatment depends on the size
of the goiter, the causes, the patient's age and whether or not pregnant, and how long
before surgery could be performed (if surgery is one the patient's options). In the past,
surgical removal of the goiter has been the most widely used method of treatment.
Antithyroid drug therapy includes use of thyroid hormone antagonists such as
propylthiouracil (PTU) and methimazole. Both drugs reduce the production of the
thyroid hormone thyroxin. Another form of treatment is a single dose of I131, a
radioactive element which destroys some of the thyroid gland's cells that normally
produce thyroxin. The result is that thyroid hormone production decreases, and the
thyroid gland decreases to its normal size. At its normal size, the gland produces only
the normal amount of the hormone thyroxin.
(b) Thyroid storm treatment. Drug therapy is used. Other measures
include such supportive treatment as nutrients, vitamins, giving fluid, and sedation, if
b. Adult Hypothyroidism (Myxedema).
(1) Description. Hypothyroidism is the reverse of hyperthyroidism. The
thyroid gland produces too much thyroxin in hyperthyroidism. The condition
hypothyroidism is caused when the thyroid gland produces too little thyroxin. Lack or
complete absence of thyroid gland activity from birth causes cretinism. Cretinism is a
dwarfed, mentally retarded state due to a failure of physical growth and mental
development. Early detection and treatment of this condition can prevent abnormal
physical development and mental retardation. Children under one year can be treated.
Sensitivity to cold.