Practice Question # 707.
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A state of low serum thyroid hormone levels or cellular resistance to thyroid hormone, hypothyroidism results from hypothalamic, pituitary, or thyroid insufficiency. Hypothyroidism is most prevalent in women and can progress to life-threatening myxedema coma — usually precipitated by infection, exposure to cold, or sedatives.
What causes it?
Hypothyroidism may result from:
- Radiation therapy
- Chronic autoimmune thyroiditis (Hashimoto’s disease)
- Inflammatory conditions, such as amyloidosis and sarcoidosis
- Pituitary failure to produce TSH
- Hypothalamic failure to produce thyrotropin-r eleasing hormone (TRH)
- Inborn errors of thyroid hormone synthesis
- Inability to synthesize thyroid hormone because of iodine deficiency (usually dietary)
- Use of antithyroid medications such as PTU.