Thyroid abnormalities are one of the most common endocrine disorders affecting millions worldwide. Thyroid hormones are well known for their role in basal metabolic rate, development and growth.
Analytes Included in the Comprehensive Profile:
TSH, free T4, free T3, reverse T3, auto antibodies.
The thyroid hormones interact with receptors found in the nucleus of every cell of the body and this interaction leads to the ‘turning on and off’ of many genes and ultimately to the modification of many bodily functions. Therefore, it is understandable that abnormalities in the level of thyroid hormones can lead to a diverse array of symptoms involving the heart, brain, skin and reproductive systems.
Hypothyroidism is the most common disorder with the prevalence in normal populations with optimal iodine levels being approximately 4-5%. It is most common in women and there are also special populations with a higher risk of developing hypothyroidism including postpartum women, individuals with a family history of autoimmune thyroid disorders, patients with previous head, neck or thyroid surgery and other autoimmune disorders. The symptoms for hypothyroidism include the well-known characteristics such as fatigue, cold extremities, weight gain and poor memory. In addition, hypothyroidism is also associated with many conditions such as hypertension, cardiovascular disease, menstrual disorders, infertility, rhinitis and urticaria.
Autoimmune disease of the thyroid can cause both hypo and hyperthyroidism as the antibodies can either block or stimulate the thyroid receptors. Estimates for the presence of thyroid antibodies in the general population are 12.4%.
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