Diffuse Toxic Goiter (Graves Disease) Follow-up

Updated: Jul 27, 2015
  • Author: Bernard Corenblum, MD, FRCPC; Chief Editor: George T Griffing, MD  more...
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Follow-up

Further Outpatient Care

Regardless of the therapy used, long-term follow-up is needed to monitor thyroid status, especially with a high risk of becoming hypothyroid in the near and distant future or relapse again into hyperthyroidism.

Ophthalmopathy runs its own course, independent of the thyroid course. Although generally benign, it may become symptomatic years after the thyroid status has been rendered normal.

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Further Inpatient Care

Hospitalization is rarely necessary. Severe disease with cardiac or other organ compensation, or thyroid storm may require more intense and controlled therapy.

Complications, such as agranulocytosis, may need specialized hospital care.

Thyroidectomy, if uncomplicated, requires a short hospital stay from 1-3 days.

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Deterrence/Prevention

Cessation of smoking has a beneficial effect on the course of ophthalmopathy.

The strong familial nature dictates that first-degree relatives, especially siblings and children, be aware of the increased risk of developing this or associated disorders. Routine testing is not recommended, but consideration for this risk is needed with new symptom development.

Associated autoimmune disease in other glands is uncommon but is of increased incidence and may clinically occur at presentation or in the near or distant future. New symptoms dictate consideration for these.

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Patient Education

For excellent patient education resources, visit eMedicineHealth's Thyroid and Metabolism Center. Also, see eMedicineHealth's patient education article Thyroid Problems.

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