Graves Disease

Graves Disease is an autoimmune disease that affects the thyroid.

The exact cause is unclear; however, it is believed to involve a combination of genetic and environmental factors.

The three treatment options are radioiodine therapy, medications, and thyroid surgery. Radioiodine therapy involves taking iodine-131 by mouth, which is then concentrated in the thyroid and destroys it over weeks to months. The resulting hypothyroidism is treated with synthetic thyroid hormone. Medications such as beta blockers may control some of the symptoms, and antithyroid medications such as methimazole may temporarily help people while other treatments are having effect. Surgery to remove the thyroid is another option.

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