Graves’ disease

29/05/2009

Graves’ disease is an autoimmune disease affecting the thyroid gland. The thyroid gland becomes enlarged. Hyperthyroidism symptoms are the result.

Symptoms

  • goiter
  • tachycardia (increased heart rate)
  • hypotonia (decreased muscle tone)
  • irritability
  • distrupted sleep pattern
  • irritability

 

Heredity:

  • relatedness factors in predispostion to the disease
  • an identical twin has a 25% chance of developing the disease if their twin is affected.

Treatment:

  • antithyroid medications such as carbimazole or methimazole and propylthiouracil may be used to decreased thyroid activity and control hyperthyroid symptoms
  • surgical removal of part of the thyroid gland may be performed to decreased thyroid activity