Did you know that Congenital Hypothyroidism is one of India’s most common congenital disabilities? It occurs when the thyroid gland doesn’t produce enough thyroid hormone. Hypothyroidism can lead to a wide range of health problems, both in children and adults. In this blog, you’ll find out the causes and symptoms of Congenital Hypothyroidism and how it can be treated. Furthermore, we’ll also discuss what steps parents can take to ensure that their child receives the necessary treatment.
The thyroid gland is a small, butterfly-shaped endocrine gland located beneath the skin and muscles in the neck. It plays a vital role in regulating the metabolism of the body. Thyroid hormone is essential for normal growth and development, and it helps control heart rate, blood pressure, and other vital functions. The gland infuses two hormones into the blood- thyroxine and triiodothyronine. The malfunctioning of the thyroid gland causes thyroid dysfunction. Underactivity of the thyroid gland causes hypothyroidism, whereas its overactivity leads to hyperthyroidism.
Hypothyroidism can occur if the thyroid gland is not formed correctly, damaged during pregnancy or delivery, or if the baby was born without it. Certain medications and medical conditions can also lead to this disorder. We call it congenital hypothyroidism when an infant is born with this condition. A baby may have a small thyroid gland during delivery or not have one at all. One common cause is a condition called athyreosis. It occurs when the thyroid gland doesn’t develop properly in the womb. Studies suggest that about 3000 to 4000 children worldwide endure congenital hypothyroidism. Regardless of the causes, starting hypothyroidism treatment immediately is crucial.
The symptoms can vary depending on how severe the condition is and when it was diagnosed. In extreme cases, symptoms appear soon after birth and may result in:
- Excessive sleeping
- Puffy face
- Large tongue
- Bloating of the abdomen with the naval sticking out
- Swelling around eyes
In mild cases, symptoms may not be apparent until later in childhood. They include:
- Short stature
- Poor weight gain
- Delayed mental and physical development
The sooner a child is diagnosed and treated, the better their chances of preventing related complications, such as intellectual or developmental impairment.
Screening newborns for congenital hypothyroidism is a widespread practice in developed nations. Despite many cases of CH in India, screening babies has not yet gained popularity in the country. Over the years, various accomplished medical experts of this field, including a paediatric endocrinologist, have raised the significance of early diagnosis. If your baby is diagnosed with congenital hypothyroidism, it is advisable to consult a paediatric endocrinologist and start the thyroid treatment as soon as possible.
Just search ‘paediatric endocrinologist or best endocrinologist near me’ to get access to a panel of award-winning super specialists on Seekmed from the comfort of your home. We are proud to be one of India’s leading telemedicine platforms offering affordable second opinions. So book an appointment with our esteemed doctors to seek an opinion on hypothyroidism and thyroid treatment.