Karnataka: Doctors want govt to mandate hypothyroidism test for newborns


What is congenital hypothyroidism?

Congenital hypothyroidism (CHT) is a condition resulting from an absent or under-developed thyroid gland (dysgenesis) or one that has developed but cannot make thyroid hormone because of a ‘production line’ problem (dyshormonogenesis). Babies with CHT cannot produce enough thyroid hormone for the body’s needs. The term ‘congenital’ means that the condition is present at birth.

What causes congenital hypothyroidism and is it inherited?

  • Very early in an unborn baby’s development the thyroid gland moves from the back of the tongue to its normal position in the neck. In some babies this fails to occur and the gland does not develop at all.
  • In others it is higher in the neck than normal and does not work as well as it should. Dysgenesis is the term that is often used to describe these forms of CHT.
  • Around 80% of babies with CHT have dysgenesis and the risk of a couple having another child with this kind of CHT is low. The more uncommon type, dyshormonogenesis, affects around 20% of babies with CHT.
  • The gland is in the right position but does not produce thyroxine normally because of a ‘production line’ problem. This type can be inherited and there is a risk that the baby’s siblings will also be affected.

Why in News

  • Two weeks ago, a dwarf girl was carried in her mother’s arms into a private clinic in Yelahanka. She wasn’t a toddler. She was 21 years old.
  • At the first look, the doctor was able to determine what led to the stunted growth. It was congenital hypothyroidism: a rare disease that can be diagnosed with a simple blood test that costs less than Rs 100. Had she been diagnosed at birth, the girl would have led a normal life, said Dr Praveen Ramachandra, director, DiaPlus Clinic, Yelahanka.
  • Many children like her have hypothyroidism-associated disorders that can be treated if diagnosed early. Paediatricians, obstetricians and gynaecologists want the Karnataka government to make it mandatory that all newborns are screened for possible hypothyroidism.
  • Addressing a press conference on Tuesday, they said they would soon petition the state and Union governments in that regard.
  • Dr Mala Dharmalingam, professor and head, endocrinology, MS Ramaiah Medical College, said a national-level committee would soon make representations to the government about making hypothyroidism screening mandatory for newborns. “In all corporate hospitals, this screening is done. There is no reason why government hospitals should not do it,” she said.
  • The screening, which costs just Rs 60-100, can improve many lives. “If the child is screened at birth and treatment begins soon after, morbidities can be avoided,” Dr Dharmalingam said. Hypothyroidism in children can cause mental retardation, stunted growth, lower IQ, hair fall and dry skin, among other complications.
  • Dr Anjana Hulse, consultant paediatric endocrinologist, Apollo Hospitals, said congenital hypothyroidism could be of two kinds. In primary hypothyroidism, the thyroid gland is absent, located elsewhere or is existent but non-functional.
  • In secondary hypothyroidism, the pituitary gland does not send messages for the secretion of thyroid hormones. “It could be multi-factorial or genetic,” she said.
Related Posts
Karnataka plans 100% quota for locals in private blue-collar jobs
The Karnataka government is planning to introduce 100% reservation to Kannadigas in blue-collar jobs in private sector industries across the state. The state labour department has released the draft amendments to ...
Manipal Hospitals corporate and teaching facilities will adopt IBM’s supercomputer, called Watson, to fight cancer This would be the first deployment of Watson in India. Watson for Oncology was developed by ...
DOWNLOAD AUGUST 2016 CURRENT AFFAIRS MAGAZINE CLICK HERE Best Current affairs Magazine for all civil services competitive examinations. It is the only magazine that covers National issues, international issues and Karnataka issues ...
BWSSB – Existing Water Supply System Scenario & Vision Document Up-To 2050
Till the year 1896, unfiltered water was supplied to Bengaluru city in the Kalyani system from a number of tanks such as Dharmambudhi, Sampangi, Ulsoor, Sankey etc., supplemented by local ...
∗ Gene theft or DNA theft is the act of acquiring the genetic material of another human being, often from a public place, without his or her permission. ∗ The DNA ...
PSLV-C31 launches IRNSS-1E
PSLV-C31 successfully put into orbit IRNSS-1E, the fifth satellite of the Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS) after its succesful launch from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre (SDSC), SHAR, Sriharikota PSLV-C31 ...
Karnataka Current Affairs – KAS / KPSC Exams – 11th April 2017
Karnataka govt to hike anganwadi workers' honorarium The state government on 10th April agreed to increase the monthly honorarium of anganwadi workers and helpers by Rs 1,000 and Rs 500 respectively, ...
A plot of land for India to build its first naval base in the Indian Ocean region has been allocated by the Seychelles government in the Assumption Island. Its is a joint ...
18th March 2017 – Today’s Karnataka State Current Affairs – KAS / KPSC Exams
  State to file revision petition in SC on quashed SC/ST promotions The Cabinet on 17th March decided to file a revision petition challenging the Supreme Court ruling which struck down the consequential ...
Karnataka Current Affairs for KAS / KPSC Exams – 15th May 2017
One lakh jobs to be created in a year In an effort to reach out to unemployed youth ahead of the 2018 Legislative Assembly elections, the Congress government has decided to ...
Karnataka plans 100% quota for locals in private
Cognitive computing in cancer treatment
BWSSB – Existing Water Supply System Scenario &
PSLV-C31 launches IRNSS-1E
Karnataka Current Affairs – KAS / KPSC Exams
India’s naval base in Seychelles
18th March 2017 – Today’s Karnataka State Current
Karnataka Current Affairs for KAS / KPSC Exams