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Goitre Disease

What is goitre disease?

Even though this condition is fairly common, there are many people who are not really aware of what it is and check with their doctors for more information on it. Goitre can be described as the enlargement of the thyroid gland in a person, which could prevent it from functioning in the right manner. At times, the thyroid gland could swell to such an extent that it can be seen in the neck. Though there are different kinds of goitre that have been known to affect people, they can be broadly divided into two categories, mainly, diffuse goitre and nodular goitre.

Most people refer to the iodine nutrient deficiency disease as goitre, because iodine deficiency is one of the prime causes of the condition. When the levels of iodine in the body fall, the glands swell up and become larger in an effort to produce hormones, which in turn leads to a swelling around the neck, often referred to, as goitre.

There is a lot of information on iodine eyes and goitre easily available through various resources. However, it is best for people to consult a doctor in case they have any queries.

Goitre Symptoms

Goitre, (also often spelled as goiter) can be described as a condition that causes the thyroid gland, located in the neck to swell up. The presence of goitre could mean that all the thyroid glands are enlarged or swollen. It could also mean that lumps or swelling have developed in one part or a few parts of the thyroid gland. Studies indicate that thyroid goitre symptoms are more commonly seen in women, as compared to men. There are different types of goitre and the thyroid goitre symptoms could vary, based on the types that affect a person. However, the main and the common thyroid goitre symptoms seen in people include swelling in the thyroid gland, just below the neck, which could lead to a lump in the throat. People suffering from goitre disease symptoms claim that they can feel the throat lump moving up and down, when they swallow.

Since goitre is caused by the deficiency of iodine in the body, it can also be referred to, as iodine disease. Some of the most common iodine disease symptoms seen in people include a tingling feeling in the throat, difficulty in swallowing, breathing problems, hoarseness, changes in the voice and coughing.

People who are suffering from multi-nodular goitre could experience different symptoms, as compared to diffuse goitre. Some of the most commonly seen multinodular goitre symptoms include, changes in:
  • Cardiovascular system, like palpitations, high blood pressure, arrhythmia and shortness of breath
  • Nervous system, to include depression, anxiety, panic attacks and sudden phobia
  • Palpable changes in the size of the thyroid glands
  • Weight, as an excess of the thyroid gland causes the metabolism to speed up, leading to sudden weight loss.
  • Sleeping patterns, where a person finds it difficult to sleep properly.

Goitre Treatment

Fortunately, with the help of the right goitre cure, it is possible for people to gain relief from the uncomfortable symptoms of the condition. However, before going any form of thyroid goitre treatment, it is important to undergo a physical exam and determine the cause of the problem. At times, people may not be required to undergo any form of treatment, in case the problem is small and non-cancerous. However, at times a person may need to take supplements and medication according to the goitre treatment guidelines specified by the doctor. In some cases a medical health care provider may ask a patient to undergo surgical treatment for goitre, though it is not very common. 

All patients who are undergoing goitre treatment would need to make dietary changes, to include higher amounts of iodine. Hence, a goitre treatment diet should include higher amounts of foods that are rich sources of iodine, such as lettuce, carrot, oats, whole rice, egg yolks, strawberries, garlic, onion, tomatoes, seafood, citrus fruits, cucumbers and pineapples. As soon as people first notice the symptoms of goitre, it is important for them to consume fresh fruits like pineapple, apple, grapes and oranges in high amounts. People can also go on a juice fast, which includes high amounts of such juices.

Just like there are certain foods that are a part of the goitre treatment diet plan, there are several which should be strictly avoided. Foods that are high in sugar, heavy food, or sour food should be strictly avoided. Alcohol, caffeine and carbonated beverages also should be avoided as far as possible. Apart from following a goitre treatment diet plan, it is also important to perform certain exercises to expedite the recovery process.

Goitre Causes

What deficiency causes goitre?

The deficiency of one main nutrient that could lead to goitre is iodine. In fact, the deficiency of iodine is also regarded as one of the main multinodular goitre causes. Some of the other causes that lead to multinodular include pituitary problems, cysts, inflammation, use of certain medication and many other conditions. Hence, people undergoing treatment for goitre are usually advised to take iodine supplement. At the same time, a diet that is high in iodine rich foods should also be incorporated by patients who are suffering from goitre.

However, all cases of goitre should be checked, treated and monitored by a doctor.

Iodine deficiency

What is iodine deficiency?

Just like the name suggests, iodine deficiency diseases are caused by the lack of adequate iodine in the body. Iodine, a chemical element which is essential for the physical and mental development of the body, is required by the body, in order to function properly. There are several metabolic processes that are also influenced by the levels of iodine in the body. The lack of adequate iodine is likely to cause iodine deficiency hypothyroidism or goiter due to iodine deficiency. Hence, as soon as any of the symptoms of iodine deficiency become evident, it is important for people to consult a doctor and seek immediate treatment.

Some of the common symptoms of iodine deficiency include swelling in the legs, decrease in concentration, muscle cramps, constipation, sleeping problems, weight gain, fatigue, increase in cholesterol, dry skin, coarse hair, cold intolerance and depression. In case the problem becomes severe, the patient may also experience puffiness around the eyes, a drop in body temperature, reduction of heart rate and in some cases, heart problems too. In case any of these symptoms are seen, people need to undergo an iodine deficiency test, or a blood test for a proper diagnosis. In case a patient is required to undergo multinodular goitre treatment, most doctors recommend radioactive iodine or a surgery, for results that are more permanent; medication may bring amount only short term relief at times.
Submitted on January 16, 2014