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Will hypothyroidism affect fetal development?

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Practicing since : 2005
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I am 14 weeks pregnant and have had blood work done twice already due to underactive thyroid. Typical level I am told is .4, mine is less than .06. I do not have an appointment for thyroid replacement meds for another 2 weeks. Is it too late to begin treatment? As far as lower IQ in the baby, has the damage been done?
Posted Wed, 2 May 2012 in Pregnancy
Answered by Dr. Rhea Chanda 32 minutes later
Hi Marsha,

Thanks for your query.

The development phase of the brain in the fetus begins right from day one and is an ongoing process. It occurs right upto the later stages of pregnancy.

Since the hypothyroidism was detected later, there is nothing much that can be done at present in terms of development.

The fetus's thyroid gland starts functioning after 12 weeks so the first trimester is most important in terms of maternal hypothyroidism.

Whether any damage has been done already is undetermined till the birth. But yes, there is a possibility of developmental defect.

The treatment should however,be started as soon as possible though no matter how late because the brain development is still ongoing.

Hope I have answered your query. I will be available for follow ups should you have any more concerns.

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