Myths about thyroid disorders !!

Myth : Once you get thyroid disorder, you have to take medicines lifelong!
Fact: It is not always true. Some of the hypothyroidism cases are sometimes reversible like borderline (subclinical) hypothyroid cases. Hypothyroidism which are diagnosed for the first time during critical illness or drug-related hypothyroidism are the cases where it may be temporary.

Myth: Children who have thyroid deficiency cannot live normal adult life!
Fact: This is not correct. With right dosage of thyroxine and regular treatment, children achieve normal height and go on to have normal pubertal development also. They can lead a normal adult life in the future without any chronic problems.

Myth: I am gaining weight/overweight so I must be having thyroid problem!
Fact: More than 90% of overweight population have normal functioning thyroid gland. The TSH values may sometimes increase a little due to sudden weight gain and should be evaluated by an endocrinologist before starting treatment. The treatment in such cases most of the time is weight management.

Myth: Pregnant women on thyroid treatment deliver abnormal children!
Fact: A mother may be diagnosed with hypothyroidism during pregnancy or may have been on treatment from before getting pregnant. But on proper thyroxine replacement therapy she is as capable of delivering a normal baby as any other normal healthy mother without hypothyroidism.

Myth: When a woman gets pregnant, she has to stop all medicines including those for the thyroid!
Facts: Thyroid disorders can be due to hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism. Some drugs used for hyperthyroidism may be changed during pregnancy. However, levothyroxine used for hypothyroidism should be continued throughout the pregnancy. Infact stopping the medicine can lead to the impaired development of the fetus.

Myth: A woman with hypothyroidism gives birth to a child thyroid problem!
Fact: It generally does not happen. Sometimes placental transfer of medicines or antibodies can result in transient thyroid disorder in the baby which usually reverts after 3-6 months. However, if the underlying cause for hypothyroidism in the mother is genetic then it may be passed on to the baby. But vertical transmission directly from mother to baby does not occur. The baby born should be tested for thyroid function tests.

Myth: Thyroid medicines are risky during pregnancy!
Fact: Thyroid medicines are absolutely safe during pregnancy. In hypothyroid women, thyroxine has several beneficial effects for mother as well as the child, like reducing risk of abortion and other pregnancy-related complications while it improves IQ (intelligence) in baby if mother takes right dose of thyroxine throughout pregnancy.