Hypothyroidism vs. Hyperthyroidism
Hypothyroidism is a condition when there is a deficiency of thyroid hormone in the body. Hyperthyroidism is characterized by excessive amounts of thyroid hormone in the body. Both hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism are extremely different cases.
The signs and symptoms of hyperthyroidism include increased heart rate ‘“ tachycardia, increased activity of bowel movements, difficulty in sleeping, intolerance to heat, nervousness and palpitation, increased respiratory rate, increased moisture of the skin, increased metabolic rate, soft and fine hair, wandering mind, sweating, scanty menstrual periods, infertility, muscle weakness, nervousness and soft nails.
In hypothyroidism, there are symptoms such as bradycardia- decreased heart rate, constipation, intolerance to cold, memory problems, coarse dry hair, slow speech movements, slow walking movements, dry skin, brittle nails, weight gain, fatigue, irritability, infertility, puffy face, loss of eyebrow hair, and heavy menstrual periods.
The causes of hypothyroidism include medications like lithium carbonate, genetic, decreased level of iodine in the body, disturbances in the pituitary gland and hypothalamus, and infections mainly viral and bacterial. Hashimoto’s thyroiditis is an immune disorder in which the thyroid gland is attacked and damaged.
Hyperthyroidism is caused by any growth present in the thyroid gland. Grave’s disease is an immunological disorder affecting the thyroid gland. The classical feature of it is exophthalmos ‘“ a protruding eye ball, which is absent in hypothyroidism. Hyperthyroidism can also lead to thyrotoxicosis.
The treatment for hypothyroidism includes thyroid hormones. It is given life long to the patient. Thyroxine is the supplement given to the patient. Thyroxine is T4 hormone of the thyroid gland. The patient is advised to take this medication early in the morning. The treatment for hyperthyroidism is anti-thyroid drugs which include propylthiouracil. It will decrease the production of thyroid hormones.
Before taking any medications for hypo or hyperthyroidism, the drug interactions should be considered. If there are high levels of thyroid stimulating antibodies in the blood of an infant, then the recommended treatment is exchange blood transfusion. This will decrease the antibody levels in the blood.
The diagnosis for hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism includes the estimation of levels T3 and T4, the thyroid hormones and TSH level. In hypothyroidism, there is decrease in the thyroid hormones level ‘“ T3 and T4 and increase in the levels of TSH. In hyperthyroidism, there are increased levels of thyroid hormones T3 and T4 and decrease in the levels of TSH. TSH is thyroid stimulating hormone.
1. Hyperthyroidism is increased levels of thyroid hormones whereas hypothyroidism is decreased levels of thyroid hormones.
2. Hyperthyroidism can lead to thyrotoxicosis and grave’s disease whereas hypothyroidism does not produce those diseases.
3. There is faster metabolism in hyperthyroidism while there is a slowÂ metabolism in hypothyroidism.
4. Hypothyroidism is treated by supplements of thyroid hormones and hyperthyroidism is treated by anti-thyroid drugs.
5. Hypothyroidism shows decreased levels of T3 and T4 and increased levels of TSH whereas in hyperthyroidism, there is an increased levels of T3 and T4 and a decreased level in TSH.