Graves’ disease is an autoimmune disease that causes the thyroid to produce too much thyroid hormone (hyperthyroidism). The thyroid controls and regulates functions in the body such as temperature, metabolism, and heart rate. Graves’ disease can affect everyone, but it is more common in women.
The symptom most associated with graves’ disease is bulging eyes (known as graves’ ophthalmopathy). Other symptoms include unplanned weight loss, heat sensitivity, enlargement of the thyroid gland, frequent bowel movements, and fatigue.
Graves’ disease is important to address as it can lead to complications. Treatments include medications along with surgery. A provider will work with the individual to determine which course of action is best.