Thyroid Disorders Community
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Can Being Born without a Thyroid Gland Lead to Other Disabilities?

I typed into Bing "born without a thyroid gland" pretty much on a lark.  I had not fathomed I would see so many responses.

I was born in 1976 without a thyroid gland.  Back then, that was pretty much unheard of.  When I tell a select few now of my condition, they have a hard time believing me.

What I'm truly wondering about is how this came to happen.  I was born 3 weeks late, my biological mother was in labour for 22 hours (reminded of this on my birthday every year until I was about 26), and the doctor had to use forceps to pull me out.  If ever there was a baby who did NOT want to be born!

This leads me to my question; can not having a thyroid gland to start off with lead to other disabilities, such as autism and/or Asperger's? (The debate about Asperger's is large, so I am mentioning both "disorders" separately.)

I have bi-polar depression, and am somewhat slow to learn things.  For the longest time, both issues had me immensely frustrated until I learned to accept it as part of who I am.  But what I'm wondering is, if I WAS born with a thyroid gland, would I still have had these problems?

Any insight from a medical professional, or someone familiar with any/all of the above "issues" is greatly welcomed.

Thank you!

This discussion is related to i was born without a THYROID GLAND, WAS ANY ONE ELSE BORN without one?.
3 Responses
Avatar universal
Naturally, there are people born with thyroids who are bipolar, autistic, have learning disabilities, etc. Who is to say whether or not your lack of a thyroid has caused any of those problems for you? Certainly not any of us. We simply will never know what would have happened were you born with a normal-functioning thyroid. For many of us with thyroid problems, we once remember what it was to feel "normal" and when we take thyroid meds, we are attempting to get back to that "normal". For you, there is no baseline for comparison. I don't mean it to sound dire-- I don't think it is, it's just a less common situation to be in. We all have our attendant issues, and it seems you have already come to accept yours, which is really the hardest part. That being said, the best thing you can do now is monitor your thyroid levels vigilantly and compare those results to the rest of the populace for reference, while paying close attention to how you feel. It's always possible that your supplemental thyroid meds are not providing ideal quantities of hormone to your body, and that is causing hypothyroid symptoms like brain fog, depression, etc. In that case it would be a matter of playing around with the dose and tweaking it in small amounts until you feel at a place that is optimal for you. Perhaps some of the problems you are having would be improved. If you have recent bloodwork you would like to post, feel free to do so (with reference ranges) and members of this board will be happy to help you interpret them. Generally doctors do not look at this message board, but I encourage you to bring this topic up with your endo or primary doctor if you haven't already. They may have some interesting insight.
1756321 tn?1547095325
Optimal care for congenital hypothyroidism (CH) includes diagnosis before age 10 - 13 days and normalization of thyroid hormone blood levels by 3 weeks of age. However, if treatment begins in the first month after birth, infants usually develop normally.  Delays in diagnosis and treatment of CH will result in impaired neurocognitive outcome as measured by IQ.  

The pathogenesis of thyroid dysgenesis (thyroid gland is missing, ectopic, or severely underdeveloped) is still largely unknown although this condition is associated with mutations of the PAX8 gene.
Avatar universal
Three years after this question, I pretty much did the same thing ie googled "born without thyroid gland" as I am same.  Born 1956, diagnosed congenital hypothyroidism in 1958 ... very lucky for me in those days that my total lack of development as a large sleepy baby was correctly diagnosed!  I began to develop normally after treatment/medication began, but at age 13 another doctor erroneously removed my medication after menstruation began and my adolescent development halted until age 20 when finally rediagnosed again.  In spite of all this I am considered to be quite intelligent although brain impaired in a number of ways, too long a story to tell just here.  I was a subject of study by a large group of med students in a Sydney hospital yesterday which refreshed my story again.  Yes I have other disabilities which may or may not have been related to my very dysfunctional thyroid (or lack thereof).  I still live in Sydney, Australia and over 60years old.
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