Tuesday, December 11, 2012

EVALUATION OF THYROID FUNCTION


CLINICAL EVALUATION

This is done by evaluating sign and symptoms of thyroid disorders or by palpation. Normal thyroid is rubbery feel; in Graves’s disease and diffused colloidal goiter it has soft consistency. In Hashimoto’s disease it is firm, in thyroid carcinoma and Riedel’s thyroiditis it is rock hard and irregular outline.

Doctors performing ultrasound of thyroid
Hyperthyroidism

Symptoms: Increase irritability, sweating, palpitation, SOB, loss of weight, increase bowel movement, loss of appetite, etc.

Signs: Tachycardia, tremor, warm and moist peripheries, arrhythmias, etc.
Hypothyroidism:

Symptoms: Dry skin, slow speech, constipation, weight gain, dry hair and fallout, facial puffiness, angina, etc.

Signs: Pale, dry skin, goiter, cool peripheries, alopecia, bradycardia, ascites, hydrocele, etc.

(Courtesy: About.com, Thyroid disease)

IN VITRO TEST OF THYROID ACTIVITY 

The tests used to investigate thyroid dysfunction can be grouped into:

1. Test for thyroid dysfunction: TSH, T4, T3 measurement in serum
2. Test to identify cause of thyroid dysfunction: E.g. autoantibodies and serum TBG, thyroid enzyme activities, biopsy, etc.
3. Test to monitor treatment and detect recurrences of follicular carcinoma: TBG measurement

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