What Do You Need to Know About Hypothyroidism in Children?

By Dr. Vaishakhi Rustagi in Paediatric (Ped) Endocrinology , Endocrinology & Diabetes

Jun 29 , 2017 | 1 min read

Thyroid gland, which is situated in the anterior part of the neck, is responsible for producing a hormone, Thyroxine, required for brain development as well as physical growth.   

Dr. Vaishakhi Rustagi says this hormone is essential for the first three years of life and later on for various metabolic functions and growth. Thyroid disorders are commonly seen in children and females are more affected than males.

Hypothyroidism is the term used to define deficiency of thyroid hormone, whereas hyperthyroidism is the term used to define excess of thyroid hormone. Hypothyroidism is much more common than hyperthyroidism.

What are the Symptoms?

  • Short stature
  • Lethargy  or excessive tiredness
  • Weight gain in spite of a Poor appetite
  • Constipation
  • Poor scholastic performance
  • Dry skin
  • Lack of interest in outdoor activities
  • Menstrual irregularities

If you child has any of the above symptoms, you need to visit a Pediatric Endocrinologist to ensure that your child is developing normally. After a few blood and radiological tests, it can be found out whether the child needs adequate treatment. Not getting the right amount of thyroid hormone can cause problems in the child.

Children with hypothyroidism live a normal life if the condition is diagnosed and treated well in time. Some children grow out of hypothyroidism so the doctor will do the necessary tests to check for this.

Thus diagnosis and treatment of hypothyroidism on time can prevent short stature and long term sequele in children.