Graves' disease

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Graves' disease

A condition usually caused by excessive production of thyroid hormone and characterized by an enlarged thyroid gland, protrusion of the eyeballs, a rapid heartbeat, and nervous excitability. Also called exophthalmic goiter.

Graves' disease

Etymology: Robert J. Graves, Irish physician, 1796-1853
a multisystem autoimmune disorder characterized by pronounced hyperthyroidism, usually associated with an enlarged thyroid gland and exophthalmos (abnormal protrusion of the eyeball). The origin is unknown, but the disease is familial and is usually associated with thyroid-stimulating autoantibodies that bind to TSH receptors and stimulate thyroid secretion. The disease, which is five times more common in women than in men, occurs most frequently when the individual is between 30 and 60 years of age and can arise after an infection or physical or emotional stress. Typical signs, which are related to hyperthyroidism, are nervousness, a fine tremor of the hands, weight loss, fatigue, breathlessness, palpitations, increased heat intolerance, increased metabolic rate, and GI motility. An enlarged thymus, generalized hyperplasia of the lymph nodes, blurred or double vision, localized myxedema, atrial arrhythmias, and osteoporosis may occur. The diagnosis may be established by tests that measure TSH, thyroxine, and triiodothyronine levels in serum. If necessary, radioactive iodine uptake in the gland is tested. Treatment may include prescription of antithyroid drugs, such as methimazole, propylthiouracil, and iodine preparations. Radioactive iodine may be administered, but hospitalization for a few days is recommended for patients treated with a large dose. Occasionally subtotal thyroidectomy may be indicated. In patients with inadequately controlled disease, infection or stress may precipitate a life-threatening thyroid storm. The exophthalmia may or may not resolve with the treatment of the disease. Also called exophthalmic goiter, thyrotoxicosis, toxic goiter.

Graves' disease

Basedow disease Endocrinology The most common cause of hyperthyroidism, due to excess thyroid stimulation by autoantibodies with diffuse toxic goiter Clinical Hyperthyroidism, exophthalmos, dermatopathy–painless, reddish lumpy rash on anterior leg, familial tendency, tachycardia, ↑ metabolic rate Risk factors Stress, smoking, RT to neck, medications–eg IL-2 and IFN-alpha, and viral infection Diagnosis Thyroid scan–diffuse ↑ uptake, ↑ TSI–Thyroid Stimulating Ig level. See Exophthalmic goiter, Primary hyperthyroidism.

Graves' disease

The most common form of hyperthyroidism, characterized by bulging eyes, rapid heart rate, and other symptoms.
Graves' disease hyperthyroidism with goitre, characterized by diffuse thyroid hyperplasia

Patient discussion about Graves' disease

Q. Is there a recommended natural cure for graves disease? I've been suffering from graves for a year now and really feel tired of it. I'm thinking of trying some natural medications cause the regular ones are dissapointing so far. Any experience with that??

A. I am not familiar with any natural supplements you can take for graves disease, furthermore, it is an illness where you should be on close monitoring of an endocrinologist, and have them tell you which medications you are allowed to take and what could make the situation worse. If regular treatment doesn't seem to help you much you should go for another check up to see how your thyroid is doing.

Q. Is there a relation between certain types of allergies and graves? I suffer from graves and have been suffering from allergies since I was real young. Are these two related somehow?? anyone else suffers from both?

A. Not that I know about. However, allergy is quite common, and Graves' disease is also not a rare disease, so it's not impossible for the two to appear in the same person.

Take care,

More discussions about Graves' disease
References in periodicals archive ?
The impact of Graves' disease and its treatment on handwriting characteristics.
The more I knew about Graves' disease, the more shocked I felt that not one medical doctor mentioned stress to me.
They reported that of these, 8 had hyperthyroidism due to Graves' disease.
Patients with Graves' disease have traditionally been prescribed radioactive iodine, but the new guidelines acknowledge the three treatment options: surgery, antithyroid medications, and radioactive iodine.
There was no correlation between the pre-treatment RAI uptake and the development of hypothyroidism in patients with Graves' disease and those with toxic nodular goiter.
Options for treating Graves' disease range from administering antithyroid drugs to trying to destroy a significant portion of the gland with radioactive iodine or surgically removing a significant portion of the gland.
An elevation of serum immunoglobulin E provides a new aspect of hyperthyroid Graves' disease.
For instance, left untreated, Graves' disease can weaken your heart muscles, leading to heart failure, and can lead to osteoporosis or severe emotional disorders.
Hypothyroidism as a late sequela in patients with Graves' disease treated with antithyroid agents.
You'd think Judy Pate, 41, would have recognized the symptoms of hyperthyroidism, or Graves' disease, when she developed them last winter.