How does congenital hypothyroidism affect the body?

Congenital hypothyroidism can affect an infant's body in a number of ways. If congenital hypothyroidism is severe and untreated, it can lead to significant deficits in mental functioning. Symptoms of congenital hypothyroidism also include the following:
  • poor feeding
  • poor weight gain
  • short stature
  • poor growth
  • poor tone
  • decreased activity
  • jaundice
  • constipation

If congenital hypothyroidism is treated early, many of its effects can be stopped before they impact your child. However, left untreated, congenital hypothyroidism can lead to problems with both mental and physical development. Many doctors will test for hypothyroidism at birth, since symptoms are not always readily apparent.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.