Thyroid hormones have considerable influence on the body. They regulate metabolism, body temperature, breathing and heart rate. Thyroid disorders are fairly common, and they can generally be well-controlled. However, they can cause extra challenges for pregnant women. The compassionate healthcare providers at MountainView Hospital understand that chronic diseases can be tricky to manage during pregnancy. We’re here to help you and your baby with all the support you need.
How pregnancy affects thyroid hormone
Some women become pregnant after being diagnosed with thyroid disease, while others acquire thyroid disease during pregnancy.
A woman’s hormonal balance changes significantly during pregnancy . Two hormones in particular—estrogen and hCG—are associated with pregnancy, and they can both cause an increase in thyroid hormone. This is a normal pregnancy-related change, although it can make diagnosing thyroid disease more difficult.
When an expecting mother has very high levels of hCG, she may develop hyperthyroidism. Most often, the cause of hyperthyroidism during pregnancy is Graves’ disease.
Hypothyroidism can develop during pregnancy because of Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, which is an autoimmune disorder. It can also be the result of treating hyperthyroidism too aggressively.
How thyroid disease can affect maternal and fetal health
Expecting mothers with thyroid disease are typically considered to have a high-risk pregnancy. If not controlled properly, thyroid disease may result in the following complications:
- Preterm birth
- Low birth weight
- Congestive heart failure
Additionally, uncontrolled hypothyroidism may result in anemia. It may also affect the baby’s brain development and growth.
How thyroid disease is controlled during pregnancy
Women who were already being treated for thyroid disease before becoming pregnant should discuss their health with an obstetrician. It may be necessary to modify the treatment plan to minimize the risk of harm to the baby. Women can also expect frequent prenatal care visits, which include a check of the thyroid function.
Hypothyroidism is treatable with a medication that is identical to natural thyroid hormone. Mild hyperthyroidism might not require treatment during pregnancy. If it does, the doctor may prescribe the lowest possible dose of an anti-thyroid medication.
At MountainView Hospital , nothing is more important to us than the health and safety of your family. Our physicians and specialists use a personalized approach to care to encourage the best possible outcome for you and your baby. Expecting parents in Las Vegas can get in touch with our state-of-the-art hospital at (702) 962-5021.