Is my grand daughter suffering from hypothyroidism?
Q: My a month old grand daughter has elevated TSH levels. The lab tests conducted a few days back revealed that her TSH levels are 150, T3 - 24 and T4 (total)- 0.8. A repetition of TSH after 5 days of the first test indicated a TSH level slightly higher than 100. The baby also got jaundice when she was just 4 days old. The tests done on the 9th day indicated a total bilirubin level of 15 and tests on the 18th day indicated the bilirubin level of 18. On doctors' prescription, we are giving her eltroxin (12.5 mg) daily. Is she suffering from hypothyroidism? Are there reasonable chances that the hypothyroidism vanishes and thyroid gets stimulated on its own?
A:Your baby has hypothyroidism, which definitely needs to be treated. In the first 3 years of life, the babys brain is developing and untreated hypothyroidism can cause permanent damage, hence treatment with thyroxine and maintaining the thyroid functions within normal range is very important. To determine the exact cause (temporary or permanent) certain tests may need to be done. The diagnosis has been made fairly early, so hopefully there may be no significant problem in the future, but the dosage of eltroxin, 12.5 mg is too low for your baby and definitely needs to be increased quickly and then titrated according to the thyroid functions.