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More people have an awareness of cholesterol problems than thyroid problems. Over half of the estimated 27 million Americans who suffer under- or overactive thyroid are undiagnosed. Thyroid problems can cause blood cholesterol to rise to dangerous levels. The hormones that the thyroid gland produces control the metabolic functions for most of the body's cells. Hypothyroidism is a condition where the thyroid produces too little thyroid hormone causing the body to slow down, hair becomes brittle, skin becomes dry and person is more sensitive to the cold. This can increase cholesterol levels as the liver's ability to process the blood is inhibited. Hypothyroidism follows diet as the leading causes of high cholesterol which can lead to heart disease. 80% of thyroid disease sufferers are women with pregnant women and elderly women more prone. 1 in 50 pregnant US women are diagnosed with hypothyroidism and 5-17% are diagnosed with the condition after birth. Treatment of the thyroid condition easily fixes the cholesterol problem. Hyperthyroidism can result in an artificially lowered cholesterol level. Thus when hyperthyroidism treatment must be carefully monitored to ensure the cholesterol level does not increase as the treatment takes effect. Most thyroid disease cases are genetic and only diet can have any preventative effect at all. However, thyroid disease is easily treated with and inexpensive medication which has no side effects. Diagnosis involves a blood test.
Source: summary of medical news story as reported by ajc - HealthDay News
About: Thyroid disease can affect cholesterol levels
Date: January 2005
Source: ajc - HealthDay News
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