Congenital hypothyroidism

Congenital hypothyroidism is an endocrine disease that is characterized by a decrease in thyroid function. This is a very rare case: for 4,000 newborns, one child with congenital hypothyroidism appears, but this disease is of great importance in the medical field, since it has a strong negative effect on the development of the motor and nervous system of the baby. This disease is more common in girls – 2.5 times more likely than in boys. Mothers who have encountered this problem with their child should immediately take action for treatment. 

Risk group

In approximately 80% of cases, it is not possible to accurately establish some type of hereditary transmission of the disease or a specific relationship between congenital hypothyroidism and a specific population. In the remaining 20%, congenital hypothyroidism is hereditary, transmitted from parent to child through mutant genes.  

The risk group for congenital hypothyroidism will include children of those mothers who have autoimmune thyroid diseases. Also, the cause may be treatment during pregnancy with thyreostatic drugs.   

Symptoms of Congenital Hypothyroidism

It should be noted here, one hundred immediately after birth it is quite difficult to identify this disease, most often it is detected at a later time, as the child develops. At each stage, the symptoms will be different, in newborns it can be:

– Late birth, with delayed delivery of more than 40 weeks;        

– immature appearance in a postponed newborn;        

– the weight of the newborn is more than 3500 grams;        

– severe swelling of the face and pads on the back of the feet and hands;        

– weak sucking reflexes;        

– gross low crying and lethargy;        

– protracted postpartum jaundice, long healing of the umbilical wound;        

– cold limbs, dry skin, brittle hair;        

– delayed development in the first months of life;        

– enlarged thyroid gland;        

– swollen belly;        

– decreased muscle tone.        

In the third month of the life of a child who has congenital hypothyroidism , the following signs of the disease will be observed: 

– dryness and pallor of the skin;        

– decreased appetite;        

– flatulence;        

– difficulty swallowing;        

– deviations from the norms of weight gain and height.        

By 9-10 months, the disease is diagnosed most easily, since at this age there is already a noticeable deviation in the development of mental motility and the following symptoms are added to all the previous ones:

– delay in teething and closure of fontanelles;        

– hair loss;        

– depressed state;        

– frequent whims of the child for no apparent reason.        

How is congenital hypothyroidism treated?

The main goal of treatment is to replenish the thyroid hormone deficiency in the body. It is simply necessary for a child with congenital hypothyroidism in order to ensure timely development. This type of treatment is called replacement therapy. It is worth saying that congenital hypothyroidism cannot be completely cured, since a defect in the work or structure of the thyroid gland cannot be completely restored. Therefore, therapy will have to be carried out throughout a person’s life.   

Treatment should be started immediately, from the moment of diagnosis. With early diagnosis, therapy can be started already on the 8-9th day of the child’s life.

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