Graves Disease and Hyperthyroidism Risks and Symptoms Checklist

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Graves' disease is an autoimmune disease that can trigger hyperthyroidism, a condition where your thyroid is overactive. Do you have risk factors for hyperthyroidism, or symptoms of an overactive thyroid.

The following checklist can help you identify your risks and symptoms. 

Risk Factors for Graves' Disease and Hyperthyroidism 

The following are some of the more common risk factors for Graves' disease and hyperthyroidism.

____ I have a family history of thyroid disease
____ I have a parent who has/had thyroid disease 
____ I have another close relative (grandparent, sibling, child) with a thyroid condition 
____ I have had my thyroid "monitored" in the past to watch for changes
____ I had a previous diagnosis of goiters/nodules
____ I currently have a goiter/enlargement in my thyroid and/or thyroid nodules
____ I was treated for hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism in the past
____ I had post-partum thyroiditis or hyperthyroidism during pregnancy in the past
____ I had a temporary thyroiditis in the past
____ I have another autoimmune disease
____ I have a family history of autoimmune disease 
____ I am pregnant now, or I have had a baby in the past nine months
____ I have a history of miscarriage
____ I have had radioactive iodine in the past due to Graves' disease/hyperthyroidism
____ I have taken antithyroid drugs in the past due to Graves' disease or a diagnosis of hyperthyroidism

Symptoms of Graves' Disease and Hyperthyroidism 

The following are some of the most accepted and commonly known symptoms of Graves' disease and hyperthyroidism.

____ My heart feels like it's skipping a beat and I feel like I'm having heart palpitations
____ My pulse is unusually fast
____ My pulse, even when resting or in bed, is high
____ My hands are shaking, I'm having hand tremors
____ I feel hot when others feel cold, I am feeling inappropriately hot or overheated
____ I'm sweating more 
____ I am losing weight inappropriately
____ I am losing weight but my appetite has increased
____ I am eating more but not gaining weight 
____ I feel like I have a lot of nervous energy that I need to burn off
____ I am having diarrhea or loose or more frequent bowel movements
____ I feel nervous or irritable
____ My skin looks or feels thinner
____ My muscles feel weak, particularly the upper arms and thighs
____ I am having difficulty getting to sleep, staying asleep, or going back to sleep after awakening in the middle of the night
____ I feel fatigued, exhausted
____ My hair is coarse and dry, breaking, brittle, falling out
____ My skin is coarse, dry, scaly, thin
____ I have a hoarse or gravely voice
____ I have pains, aches in joints, hands, and feet
____ I am having irregular menstrual cycles (shorter, longer, or heavier, or more frequent, or not at all)
____ I am having trouble conceiving a baby
____ I have had one or more miscarriages
____ I feel depressed
____ I feel restless, or anxious
____ I have had panic attacks
____ I've recently been diagnosed as having panic disorder, anxiety disorder, or panic attacks
____ I have puffiness and swelling around the eyes and face
____ My eyes seem to be enlarging, or getting more "bug-eyed" looking
____ I'm having dry eyes 
____ My eyes feel gritty and dry
____ My eyes feel sensitive to light
____ My eyes get jumpy/tics 
____ I'm experiencing double vision 
____ My moods change easily
____ I have feelings of worthlessness
____ I have difficulty concentrating or focusing
____ I have more feelings of sadness
____ I seem to be losing interest in normal daily activities
____ I'm more forgetful lately
____ My neck is sore or tender
____ My neck appears to be enlarged 

You may also have some of the following symptoms, which have been reported more frequently in people with Graves' disease and hyperthyroidism:

____ My hair is falling out
____ I can't seem to remember things
____ I have an increased sex drive, or no sex drive
____ I feel shortness of breath and tightness in the chest
____ I have tinnitus (ringing in ears)
____ I get recurrent sinus infections
____ I have vertigo
____ I feel some lightheadedness
____ I have severe menstrual cramps

A Word from Verywell

You can use this Graves' and hyperthyroidism checklist to bring to your healthcare practitioner to help you get a proper diagnosis. If you have already been diagnosed and are being treated for Graves' disease and hypothyroidism, this checklist may be helpful to you in your discussions with your practitioner. Your response to treatment can help you and your practitioner better fine-tune your treatment approach. Your mutual goal should be to safely relieve your hyperthyroidism symptoms as much and as soon as possible. Keep in mind that you are not likely to experience all of these symptoms, but this checklist and Graves' disease/hyperthyroidism inventory can be helpful to both you and your doctor in identifying the best options for diagnosis and treatment of your overactive thyroid. 

Sources:

Bahn, R, Burch, H, Cooper, D et al. "Hyperthyroidism and Other Causes of Thyrotoxicosis: Management Guidelines of the American Thyroid Association and the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists. Endocrine Practice, 2011;17(No. 3)

Braverman, MD, Lewis E., and Robert D. Utiger, MD. Werner and Ingbar's The Thyroid: A Fundamental and Clinical Text. 9th ed., Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins (LWW), 2005.

De Groot, Leslie, M.D., Thyroid Disease Manager, Online book. Online

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