There are various treatments that can be used for hyperthyroidism. Generally, antithyroid medication or radioactive iodine are the ones chosen, but in some cases surgery may be needed. Physicians must evaluate the cause for the hyperthyroidism, age of the patient, level of thyroid hormones in the system, and other medical conditions before making a decision on the appropriate treatment plan (Hyperthyroidism, 2011).
Radioactive iodine is the treatment that provides the best opportunity for permanently curing hyperthyroidism. Many times it is chosen after a patient has tried antithryoid medication or in a situation where a patient experiences hyperthyroidism again after part of the thyroid has been removed with surgery (Radioactive Iodine for Hyperthyroidism, 2011). Generally, a patient will have normal thyroid hormone levels eight to twelve weeks after receiving the radioactive iodine. In some cases, a patient may require more than one dose. Radioactive iodine is generally recommended for patients who have Grave’s disease and are over the age of fifty or if the patient has thyroid nodules. Radioactive iodine can not be used in patients who are pregnant, breastfeeding, or have thyroiditis (Radioactive Iodine for Hyperthyroidism, 2011).
The mechanism of action of radioactive iodine (I-131) is a physiological response in the system. The radioactive iodine is taken by the iodide transporter of the thyroid in the same way normal iodine would be and then processed. After the radioactive iodine is processed, the b particle destroys the follicular cell which leads to a reduction in the volume of the hormones produced. Once the volume of the hormones produced is decreased, control of the thyrotoxicosis occurs (M...
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