• In most cases, women with hypothyroidism during pregnancy have Hashimoto’s disease. This autoimmune disease causes the body’s immune system to attack and damage the thyroid.

  • When that happens, the thyroid can’t produce and release high enough levels of thyroid hormones, impacting the entire body

  • Pregnant women with hypothyroidism may feel very tired, have a hard time dealing with cold temperatures and experience muscles cramps.

  • Thyroid hormones are important to your baby’s development while in the womb. These hormones help develop the brain and nervous system.

  • If you have hypothyroidism, it’s important to control your thyroid levels during pregnancy.

  • If your baby doesn’t get enough thyroid hormone during development, the brain may not develop correctly and there could be issues later.

  • Untreated or insufficiently treated hypothyroidism during pregnancy may lead to complications like miscarriage or preterm labor.


  • Feeling tired (fatigue).

  • Experiencing numbness and tingling in your hands.

  • Having constipation.

  • Gaining weight.

  • Experiencing soreness throughout your body (can include muscle weakness).

  • Having higher than normal blood cholesterol levels.

  • Feeling depressed.

  • Being unable to tolerate cold temperatures.

  • Having dry, coarse skin and hair.

  • Experiencing a decrease sexual interest.

  • Having frequent and heavy menstrual periods.

  • Seeing physical changes in your face (including drooping eyelids, as well as puffiness in the eyes and face).

  • Having your voice become lower and hoarser.

  • Feeling more forgetful (brain fog).


  • It can actually be difficult to diagnose hypothyroidism because the symptoms can be easily confused with other conditions.

  • If you have any of the symptoms of hypothyroidism, talk to your healthcare provider. The main way to diagnose hypothyroidism is a blood test called the thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) test.

  • Your healthcare provider may also order blood tests for conditions like Hashimoto’s disease.

  • If the thyroid is enlarged, your provider may be able to feel it during a physical exam during an appointment.


  • In most cases, hypothyroidism is treated by replacing the amount of hormone that your thyroid is no longer making.

  • This is typically done with a medication.

  • One medication that is commonly used is called levothyroxine.

  • Taken orally, this medication increases the amount of thyroid hormone your body produces, evening out your levels.

  • Hypothyroidism is a manageable disease. However, you will need to continuously take medication to normalize the amount of hormones in your body for the rest of your life.

  • With careful management, and follow-up appointments with your healthcare provider to make sure your treatment is working properly, you can lead a normal and healthy life.

diseases treatments health prevention disorders endocrine-system hypothyroidism

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