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Endocrine Disorders - Term Paper Example

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Endocrine Disorders Author Endocrine Disorders Hormonal system plays a vital role in performing bodily functions. Hormones are chemical agents which help in different bodily reactions. Hormones are secreted by glands in our body. Thyroid is one of the most important gland in our body which produces two main hormones known as thyroxine and triiodothyronine, store them and then secrete them whenever they are needed in the body…
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Download file to see previous pages In some diseases abnormalities occur in the gland which cause irregularity in the secretion of these thyroid hormones. The most common abnormalities of thyroid gland are hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism. Hyperthyroidism means the excessive secretion of thyroid hormones from thyroid gland whereas Hypothyroidism is the decreased secretion of thyroid hormone from thyroid gland. ETIOLOGY Graves disease is an autoimmune disease whereas Myxedema is a disease caused by hypothyroidism. In autoimmune diseases our immune system produces antibodies against our own organs or organ system. In Graves disease our immune system produces antibodies against thyroid gland which increase the secretion of the thyroxine from thyroid gland. These antibodies are called thyroid stimulating immunoglobulin (TSI). Thyroid stimulating immunoglobulins bind to the receptor and imitate the action of thyroid stimulating hormone in releasing thyroxine from the thyroid gland. The effect of thyroid stimulating immunoglobulin is excessive and causes increased production and secretion of thyroxine from the thyroid gland. Another type of immunoglobulin that is formed by our immune system against the thyroid gland also acts on the TSH receptors and stimulates the growth of thyroid gland excessively. These immunoglobulins are known as thyroid growth stimulating immunoglobulins (TGI). These antibodies are the primary cause because of which Graves Disease occurs in an individual. Myxedema on the other hand is a condition caused by hypothyroidism and not hyperthyroidism which is seen patients with Graves Disease. The reason for which edema occurs in hypothyroidism is not clearly known but it is said that the increased deposition of chondrioton sulphate and hyaluronic acid in interstitial spaces causes it. The causes of hypothyroidism that eventually lead to myxedema are autoimmune diseases, thyroiditis or surgically removed thyroid gland. In other words Myxedema is a condition caused by lack of thyroid hormones whereas Graves Disease itself leads to excess activity of the thyroid gland. Myxedema and Graves Disease are both concerned with the abnormality of the thyroid gland. SYMPTOMS The patients suffering from Graves disease show diffuse hyperplasia of thyroid, anxiety and tremor of hands. The patient also loses weight and suffers from muscle weakness. The patient will experience extreme fatigue but will be unable to sleep properly. The skin of the patient will be soft and warm. Intolerance to heat and extreme sweating are also seen in the patients suffering from Graves disease. Increased gastrointestinal tract motility also occurs which leads to mal-absorption of food and diarrhea. Exophthalmos is also seen in these patients which is the protrusion of eyeball. The patients with myxedema on the other hand show sluggishness in mental and physical activity. The patients suffering from myxedema show difficulty in speech and intolerance to cold. Sympathetic activity is decreased which in turn decreases the gastrointestinal motility and sweating. The decreased gastrointestinal motility in turn causes constipation. Due to decreased sympathetic activity the blood flow in these patients is low and so the patients looks pale. These patients have coarse facial features and enlarged tongue. The voice becomes deep in myxedema. TREATMENT In Graves disease the ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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