Last updated:10-15-2008
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Definition and causes

Increased activity in the thyroid gland is also calledtyreotoksikose, hypothyroidismorhypertyreoseand describes a condition in whichthyroid(thyroid) to excrete excessive amounts of thyroid gland function. This hormone helps regulate the body's metabolism, and the disease is therefore oftenincreased metabolismthe people lead.


Tyreotoksikose is a relatively frequent disease in Denmark with 4-5000 new cases annually. There are about. 4 times as many women as men are affected by the disease.


The mode can occur for many different reasons and have different names depending on the underlying cause. The three major causes are:


  • Graves' disease (also known as Basedows disease or diffuse toxic goitre).A disease where the body's own immune cells attack the thyroid gland and causes the excretion of large amounts of thyroid gland function. This is the most common cause among younger people.

  • Knud Truma (Multinodøs toxic goitre). A state where scattered small nodules in the thyroid gland is responsible for overproduction of thyroid gland function. In each case caused the state a single node in the glands that produce more than thyroid-stimulating hormone, while the rest of the glands are healthy. Gordian knot is called in this case asolitært toxic adenoma. Both types of lumps are benign. Knud Truma is the leading cause of tyreotoksikose in elderly people.

  • Subacute tyroiditis. A more rare inflammation of the thyroid gland, which often caused by a viral infection. Is characterized by alternating periods of above-and below production of the hormone, and in between periods of normal function. 

Symptoms of tyreotoksikose

Magnification of the thyroid is calledgoitreand can sometimes occur many years before developing symptoms of tyreotoksikose. It is not necessarily a sign of disease in glands, like disease in glands often occur without magnification.


The symptoms of overproduction of thyroid gland function is the same whatever the cause, and is due to the increased metabolism, which are taking shape in the form of:

  • Psychiatric symptoms such as anxiety, restlessness and internal turmoil are often present.

  • Sweating and heat intolerance. The skin is hot and humid.

  • Weight loss despite good appetite.

  • Palpitations and shortness of breath.

  • Loose stools or diarrhea.

  • Muscular weakness and fatigue are common, as well as fine tremor of the hands (tremor).

  • Menstrual disorder.

  • Eye Symptoms developed at 5-10 with Graves' disease. Symptoms may include redness and irritation with the sensation of dryness and foreign body in the eye. Large outstanding narrowed eyes and eye movement is also seen. Such disturbances, for example. loss of color can also occur.

Precautions and diagnosis

If you have these symptoms, it is important to the doctor. The diagnosis is often made solely by the often very characteristic symptoms, but this is supplemented with blood tests, which measure hormone levels in the blood.


A special scan of the thyroid gland, called atyreoidea-scintigrafi,can measure included radioactive iodine mark in glands (you get before injecting a quantity of radioactive iodine into the blood vessels). Inclusion of iodine in the glands are directly related to the formation of the hormone, and if a part of the endocrine glands to produce, will this arealight upon this scan.


A special blood test can determine whether Graves' disease where the body's own antibodies attack the thyroid gland. To determine whether the disease involves the eyes performed thorough eye examinations.


Treatment of tyreotoksikose

There are three types of treatment that can be used alone or in combination. 

  • Medical treatmentwith drugs that block thyroid jodoptag. The excretion of the hormone decreases gradually over time as stocks depleted.

  • Radioactive iodinehas proven to be effective in destroying the areas of the thyroid gland, which produces too much hormone (radiojodbehandling). There is another type of radioactive iodine as well as higher doses than the radioactive iodine, used in the scan. The treatment is particularly effective at the Focal truma, where it is exploited, that they diseased areas of the glands have an increased capture of iodine in relation to the rest of the glands. The treatment framework, therefore, primarily the diseased areas.

  • Operating treatmentwhere all or parts of the thyroid gland removed. This treatment is used primarily to younger people with a significantly enlarged thyroid, or when the two other treatment has proved inadequate. 

There may also be used medication to assuage some of the symptoms. So-called Be

Related articles:

Decreased activity in biskjoldbruskkirtlerne (Hypoparatyreoidisme)
Decreased activity of the thyroid (Myksødem)
Increased activity in biskjoldbruskkirtlerne (Hyperparatyreoidisme)
Increased activity in the thyroid (Tyreotoksikose)
Thyroid and biskjoldbruskkirtlerne (glandular thyroid and glandular paratyroidea)
Tumor of the thyroid (Tumors in the thyroid gland)



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