thyroid gland lies in the base of the neck and is responsible
for producing various hormones
the body needs for converting food to energy and for growth
Hypothyroidism, or deficiency in thyroid
production, can cause mental deficiency, speech and hearing
problems, motor problems, trouble regulating body temperature,
apnea, and psychosis (madness).
Hyperthyroidism, or overactivity of the
thyroid gland, can cause tremor, nervousness, insomnia, decreased
and a range of other disorders.
Left untreated, either hypothyroidism or
hyperthyroidism can cause coma and death. However, treatment
to restore proper levels of thyroid hormone can reverse some
or all of the symptoms. Thyroid hormones are especially critical
during fetal and neonatal development; severe hypothyroidism
can retard growth of neurons and connections in the brain,
and this damage is often irreversible.
by Catherine E. Myers. Copyright © 2006 Memory Loss and the Brain