Hyperthyroidism occurs when the thyroid releases too much of its hormones over a short (acute) or long (chronic) period of time. You may have heard the condition referred to as an “overactive thyroid.”
Many diseases and conditions can cause this problem, including, tumors in the reproductive organs, taking large amounts of thyroid hormones, getting too much iodine, Graves disease, and viral infections.
Hyperthyroidism is generally treatable and only rarely life threatening.
Treatment depends on the cause and the severity of symptoms. Sometimes the condition goes away on its own. If the thyroid must be removed with surgery or destroyed with radiation, you must take thyroid hormone replacement pills for the rest of your life. Beta-blockers such as propranolol are used to treat some of the symptoms, including rapid heart rate, sweating, and anxiety until the hyperthyroidism can be controlled.
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