It’s well known that thyroid disorder can affect your metabolism, but people may not know that there’s a link between thyroid problems and high blood pressure. If you’ve been diagnosed with either, you may want to discuss the other with your doctor.
At Heart & Vascular Institute, our experts have specialized knowledge about cardiology. We also have an endocrinologist on staff, Dr. Sablaa Ali. Taking a team approach to treating thyroid disorder and hypertension gives you the best of both specialties.
Your thyroid is a small, butterfly-shaped gland at the base of your throat. Your pituitary gland produces thyroid-stimulating hormone that messages your thyroid when to produce a hormone called T3. Some of your T3 converts to T4. Both are involved in numerous body processes.
Your thyroid hormones are involved in metabolism, growth and development, your heart rate, how well you concentrate, and many other processes. There are two main thyroid disorders: hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism.
If your thyroid gland produces more T3 than your body needs, you have hyperthyroidism. You may feel fidgety and have diarrhea, unexplained weight loss, and other symptoms.
The second type of thyroid disorder, hypothyroidism, is far more common. This is what it’s called when your thyroid doesn’t produce enough hormone. You may have constipation, weight gain, and difficulty concentrating.
Hypertension is the medical term for high blood pressure, and it measures how much pressure your blood puts on the walls of your arteries. Everyone’s blood pressure changes throughout the day, but when you have hypertension, your blood pressure stays elevated all the time.
Hypertension raises your risk for several serious problems. You’re more likely to develop heart disease or have a stroke when you have uncontrolled hypertension. Usually, high blood pressure can be treated with medications and lifestyle interventions.
Both types of thyroid disorder can lead to hypertension, though they get there in different ways. Hyperthyroidism increases your heart rate and makes your heart work harder, while hypothyroidism weakens your heart muscle and makes it less efficient.
About 3% of people with hypertension have thyroid disorder, and it’s called secondary hypertension.
In those cases, the usual medications for treating blood pressure don’t help lower it. However, treating the underlying thyroid condition along with anti-hypertensive treatments can help.
If you’ve been diagnosed with thyroid disorder and your blood pressure is consistently high, schedule an appointment at Heart & Vascular Institute. We offer expertise in both cardiology and endocrinology to help you live the healthiest life possible.
To schedule an appointment, call one of our convenient locations in Dearborn, Detroit, or Southfield, Michigan, or use our online booking tool.