Hyperthyroidism is a condition in which the thyroid gland makes too much thyroid hormone. The condition is often called overactive thyroid.
The thyroid gland is an important organ of the endocrine system.
It is located at the front of the neck just above where your collarbones meet.
The gland makes the hormones that control the way every cell in the body uses energy.
This process is called metabolism.
Cushing syndrome is a disorder that occurs when your body has a high level of the hormone cortisol.
The most common cause of Cushing syndrome is taking too much glucocorticoid or corticosteroid medicine. This form of Cushing syndrome is called exogenous Cushing syndrome. Prednisone, dexamethasone, and prednisolone are examples of this type of medicine. Glucocorticoids mimic the action of the body’s natural hormone cortisol. These drugs are used to treat many conditions such as asthma, skin inflammation, cancer, bowel disease, joint pain, and rheumatoid arthritis.
Other people develop Cushing syndrome because their body produces too much cortisol. This hormone is made in the adrenal glands.
Causes of too much cortisol are:
• Cushing disease, which occurs when the pituitary gland makes too much of the hormone adrenocorticotrophic hormone (ACTH). ACTH then signals the adrenal glands to produce too much cortisol. A pituitary gland tumor can cause this condition.
• Tumor of the adrenal gland
• Tumor elsewhere in the body that produces corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH)
• Tumors elsewhere in the body that produce ACTH (ectopic Cushing syndrome)
POLYCYSTIC OVARY SYNDROME
Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a condition in which a woman has increased levels of male hormones (androgens).
Many problems occur as a result of this increase of hormones, including:
• Menstrual irregularities
• Skin problems such as acne and increased hair growth
• Increased number of small cysts in the ovaries
PCOS is linked to changes in hormone levels that make it harder for the ovaries to release fully-grown (mature) eggs. The reasons for these changes are unclear.
The hormones affected are:
• Estrogen and progesterone, the female hormones that help a woman’s ovaries release eggs
• Androgen, a male hormone that is found in small amounts in women
Normally, one or more eggs are released during a woman’s cycle. This is known as ovulation. In most cases, this release of eggs occurs about 2 weeks after the start of a menstrual period.
In PCOS, mature eggs are not released. Instead, they stay in the ovaries with a small amount of fluid (cyst) around them. There can be many of these. However, not all women with the condition will have ovaries with this appearance.
Women with PCOS have cycles where ovulation does not occur every month which may contribute to infertility The other symptoms of this disorder are due to the high levels of male hormones.
Most of the time, PCOS is diagnosed in women in their 20s or 30s. However, it may also affect teenage girls. The symptoms often begin when a girl’s periods start. Women with this disorder often have a mother or sister who has similar symptoms.
Diabetes is a long-term (chronic) disease in which the body cannot regulate the amount of sugar in the blood.
Insulin is a hormone produced by the pancreas to control blood sugar. Diabetes can be caused by too little insulin, resistance to insulin, or both.
To understand diabetes, it is important to first understand the normal process by which food is broken down and used by the body for energy.
Several things happen when food is digested and absorbed:
• A sugar called glucose enters the bloodstream. Glucose is a source of fuel for the body.
• An organ called the pancreas makes insulin. The role of insulin is to move glucose from the bloodstream into muscle, fat, and other cells, where it can be stored or used as fuel.
People with diabetes have high blood sugar because their body cannot move sugar from the blood into muscle and fat cells to be burned or stored for energy, and/or because their liver makes too much glucose and releases it into the blood.
This is because either:
• Their pancreas does not make enough insulin
• Their cells do not respond to insulin normally
• Both of the above
There are two major types of diabetes.
The causes and risk factors are different for each type:
• Type 1 diabetes is less common. It can occur at any age, but it is most often diagnosed in children, teens, or young adults. In this disease, the body makes little or no insulin. This is because the pancreas cells that make insulin stop working. Daily injections of insulin are needed. The exact cause of the failure to make enough insulin is unknown.
• Type 2 diabetes is more common. It most often occurs in adulthood, but because of high obesity rates, children and teens are now being diagnosed with this disease. Some people with type 2 diabetes do not know they have it. With type 2 diabetes, the body is resistant to insulin and doesn’t use insulin as well as it should. Not all people with type 2 diabetes are overweight or obese.
• There are other causes of diabetes, and some people cannot be classified as type 1 or type 2.
Gestational diabetes is high blood sugar that develops at any time during pregnancy in a woman who does not already have diabetes.
If your parent, brother, or sister has diabetes, you may be more likely to develop the disease.
Osteoporosis is a disease in which bones become fragile and more likely to break (fracture).
Osteoporosis is the most common type of bone disease.
Osteoporosis increases the risk of breaking a bone. About one half of all women over the age of 50 will have a fracture of the hip, wrist, or vertebra (bones of the spine) during their lifetime. Spine fractures are the most common.
Your body needs the minerals calcium and phosphate to make and keep healthy bones.
• During your life, your body continues to both reabsorb old bone and create new bone.
• As long as your body has a good balance of new and old bone, your bones stay healthy and strong.
• Bone loss occurs when more old bone is reabsorbed than new bone is created.
Sometimes, bone loss occurs without any known cause. Other times, bone loss and thin bones run in families. In general, white, older women are the most likely to have bone loss.
Brittle, fragile bones can be caused by anything that makes your body destroy too much bone, or keeps your body from making enough new bone. As you age, your body may reabsorb calcium and phosphate from your bones instead of keeping these minerals in your bones. This makes your bones weaker.
A major risk is not having enough calcium to build new bone tissue. It is important to eat/drink enough high-calcium foods. You also need vitamin D, because it helps your body absorb calcium. Your bones may become brittle and more likely to fracture if:
• If you do not eat enough food with calcium and vitamin D
• Your body does not absorb enough calcium from your food, such as after gastric bypass surgery
Other causes of bone loss include:
• A decrease in estrogen in women at the time of menopause and a decrease in testosterone in men as they age
• Being confined to a bed due to a prolonged illness (mostly affects bones in children)
• Having certain medical conditions that cause increased inflammation in the body
• Taking certain medicines, such as certain seizure medicines, hormone treatments for prostate or breast cancer, and steroid medicines taken for more than 3 months
Other risk factors include:
• Absence of menstrual periods for long periods of time
• A family history of osteoporosis
• Drinking a large amount of alcohol
• Low body weight
• Having an eating disorder, such as anorexia nervos
Blood pressure is a measurement of the force on the walls of your arteries as your heart pumps blood through your body. You can measure your blood pressure at home. You can also have it checked at your health care provider’s office or even a fire station.
Sit in a chair with your back supported. Your legs should be uncrossed, and your feet on the floor.
Your arm should be supported so that your upper arm is at heart level. Roll up your sleeve so that your arm is bare. Be sure the sleeve is not bunched up and squeezing your arm. If it is, take your arm out of the sleeve, or remove the shirt entirely.
You or your provider will wrap the blood pressure cuff snugly around your upper arm. The lower edge of the cuff should be 1 inch (2.5 cm) above the bend of your elbow.
• The cuff will be inflated quickly. This is done either by pumping the squeeze bulb or pushing a button on the device.
You will feel tightness around your arm.
• Next, the valve of the cuff is opened slightly, allowing the pressure to slowly fall.
• As the pressure falls, the reading when the sound of blood pulsing is first heard is recorded. This is the systolic pressure.
• As the air continues to be let out, the sounds will disappear. The point at which the sound stops is recorded. This is the diastolic pressure.
Inflating the cuff too slowly or not inflating it to a high enough pressure may cause a false reading. If you loosen the valve too much, you will not be able to measure your blood pressure.
The procedure may be done two or more times.