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Doctor insights on: Is There A Difference Between Cretinism And Congenital Hypothyroidism

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Is there a difference between cretinism and congenital hypothyroidism?

Is there a difference between cretinism and congenital hypothyroidism?

Yes: Cretinism is an old description of children with growth stunning due to profound hypothyroidism, either congenital or acquired who go untreated. Their physical appearance is quite unique but now seldom encountered due to new born screening and early detection. I myself have not seen a case during my entire fellowship period ! it is present in other parts of the world where newborn screen is absent. ...Read more

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Dr. Judy Saslow
108 doctors shared insights

Hypothyroidism (Infant And Child) (Definition)

Congenital hypothyroidism is a medical condition in which babies have low levels of thyroid hormone. Thyroid hormone is crucial for development, especially development of the brain, and lack of thyroid hormone can lead to mental retardation. Causes of congenital hypothyroidism include the failure of the thyroid gland to form (agenesis) or immature brain to gland signaling. Treatment via thyroid hormone replacement is very effective. ...Read more


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Please advise what is the difference between cretinism and congenital hypothyroidism?

Please advise what is the difference between cretinism and congenital hypothyroidism?

Old term vs new: Cretinism is a term used before testing helped sort out many of the causes of mental retardation that affected infants and children. It was broadly applied to many with profound retardation and developmental delay. Many were found to have congenital hypothyroidism, some down syndrome or other problems.For many it became jargon for profoundly retarded. The term cretin is rarely used today. ...Read more

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I want to know what is the difference between cretinism and congenital hypothyroidism?

I want to know what is the difference between cretinism and congenital hypothyroidism?

See below: Cretinism is the condition that can result from congenital hypothyroidism. Think of it as cause and effect. Congenital hypothyroidism is the cause and cretinism is the effect. ...Read more

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Is congenital hypothyroidism a sort of cretinism?

Is congenital hypothyroidism a sort of cretinism?

Yes: Cretinism or cretin was the term years ago to describe infants with the constellation of symptoms expressed in untreated congenital hypothyroidism.The term is a bit archaic, and has a derogatory connotation attached to its use.I seldom see the term used any more & haven't seen it in research literature in decades. ...Read more

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Help please! is congenital hypothyroidism a type of cretinism?

Yes: Cretinism or cretin was the term years ago to describe infants with the constellation of symptoms expressed in untreated congenital hypothyroidism.The term is a bit archaic, and has a derogatory connotation attached to its use. ...Read more

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Is it true that congenital hypothyroidism is a type of cretinism?

Old term: The term cretin is an old term often used as a slang for the mentally defective kids in foundling homes or institutions.It arose at a time before laboratory testing found that many had congenital hypothyroidism. The term furfuraceous cretin was often a subtype ascribed to kids with down syndrome. Present scientific papers and discussions rarely use the term any more. ...Read more

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What is congenital hypothyroidism?

What is congenital hypothyroidism?

Neonatal hypothyroid: Rare thyroidopathies resulting from mutations that prevent the fetal or neonatal thyroid gland from producing enough hormone are collectively called congenital hypothyroidism. Even more rare are cases of lingual or other thyroid ectopy or agenesis that can have the same effect (low thyroxine). As this hormone is required for brain development affected infants can become intellectually challenged. ...Read more

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What causes congenital hypothyroidism?

What causes congenital hypothyroidism?

Underdevelopment...: Congenital thyroid dysplasia, poor development of thyroid gland in utero, leads to congenital hypothyroidism. ...Read more

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How do you get congenital hypothyroidism?

Genetic & sporadic: Hi. Congenital hypothyroidism left untreated is disastrous for the patient (cretinism). In the US, we screen all neonates for hypothyroidism. The only patient with cretinism I've seen was born in Mexico, where they don't screen neonates; it was tragic. There are known genes that can cause congenital hypothyroidism either in the homozygous recessive state or heterozygous dominant state. Screen!!! ...Read more

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Any good websites for congenital hypothyroidism?

Try hormones.org: This is the official website of the hormone foundation of the endocrine society, specializing in patient education on endocrine issues. Good luck! ...Read more

Dr. Su Fairchild
1,203 doctors shared insights

Hypothyroidism (Definition)

The thyroid gland is an endocrine organ located in the front part of the neck. Its role is to make thyroid hormones, which control the way cells use energy. Hyperthyroidism results when the thyroid gland is overactive and too much thyroid hormone is produced, which speeds up metabolism. This results in weight loss, a quick heartbeat, sweating, nervousness, ...Read more