Common Endocrine Disorder Resulting From Deficiency Of Thyroid Hormone

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Hypothyroidism is a common endocrine disorder resulting from deficiency of thyroid hormone. In the United States and other areas of adequate iodine intake, autoimmune thyroid disease (Hashimoto disease) is the most common cause of hypothyroidism; worldwide, iodine deficiency remains the foremost cause (Orlander, 2015). Serum TSH measurement is the single most reliable test to diagnose all common forms of hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism. If the serum TSH level is elevated, testing should be repeated with a serum free thyroxine (T4) measurement. Patients with elevated TSH levels but normal free hormone levels or estimates are considered to have mild or subclinical hypothyroidism. Primary hypothyroidism is virtually the only disease that is characterized by sustained rises in TSH levels. In early hypothyroidism, TSH levels are elevated andT4 levels are normal to low (Orlander, 2015).
What additional findings on the physical exam would you look for?
Additional findings may include changes in the EKG, bradycardia, symptoms of anemia, altered respiratory status, complaint of constipation, dry skin, brittle hair, cold intolerance, lack of coordination, complaint of decreased libido, musculoskeletal pain/stiffness, possible thyroid gland enlargement/goiter (Woo & Wynne, 2012) The patient likely will not report any sudden changes in energy level, but rather look back and realize she does not have the energy to participate in activities that she used to engage in. Individuals can…

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