Dear Thyroid received a letter from a 10-year-old patient with Graves’ disease.
“Dear Ms. Katie,
Hello, I'm “K”. I am 10 years old and have had Graves Disease since I was 7. Right now I am mad at my thyroid. I just had my blood work done 3 weeks ago and now my Pediatric Endocrinologist needs me to have it done again next week. It really sucks! I wish that I didn't have thyroid disease and I wish there was a cure. I don't like having a chubby belly. It makes me feel sad. I used to be skinny until they put me on meds to stop my thyroid from working. People don't understand about thyroid disease and when I get my bracelet I'm gonna tell everybody that we need to hope for a cure someday. Thank you for listening to me. I hope to talk to you soon. :-)< “K”
Graves’ is a rare autoimmune disease affecting 13 million people, primarily women. When searching for statistics about Graves’ disease in children, specifically; though none could be found, many articles about pediatric Graves’ could:
• The rise of Graves’ disease in children and early remission, written by Elaine Moore.
• The Management of Graves Disease in Children, with Special Emphasis on Radioiodine Treatment, from the Endocrine Society.
• With respect to testing, Mary Shomon has written a very thorough article about tests required for thyroid function.
If your child seems off, physically and or mentally, it could be thyroid related and it’s important to have the aforementioned thyroid function tests as well as an ultrasound and possibly a nuclear scan of the thyroid.