Thyroid in Pregnancy

Pregnancy is a time where the smallest deviation from the norm evokes great fear and confusion in a mother ‘s mind.

Thyroid diseases are common in pregnancy because of many changes in the mother’s body to accommodate the newcomer.

The most common problems faced are either a high TSH or a low TSH.

TSH (Thyroid Stimulating Hormone) is a signal from the master gland in the brain that tells us that there is a change in the quantity of thyroid hormones circulating in the body.

High TSH signifies lower thyroid hormone concentration than required and requires replenishment of the hormone to normalise the TSH, so high TSH means- give me more.

Low TSH is a little more tricky, it means there is a little more thyroid hormone circulating in the mother’s blood.

But this does not mean it is necessarily harmful. Gestational thyrotoxciosis or pregnancy associated thyroid hormone excess is the usual cause and does not require any treatment.

Treatment is required in a few cases only. It is strongly recommended to consult an ENDOCRINOLOGIST nearest to you to decide whether treatment is required. In lots of cases, incorrect treatment is administered when not required.

The best treatment is prevention. So any lady planning pregnancy must test her thyroid functions (T3, T4, TSH) before conception to avoid undue stress and worry after conception in order to achieve and maintain a normal TSH prior to conception.

This webpage is edited by Dr. Tejal Lathia.

Dr Tejal Lathia is an Expert Endocrinologist, currently working as Consultant Endocrinologist at Fortis-Hiranandani Hospital and MGM New Bombay Hospital, Vashi, Navi Mumbai (Maharashtra) India.