15 Facts About Iodine deficiency


Iodine deficiency is a lack of the trace element iodine, an essential nutrient in the diet.

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Iodine deficiency is an important global health issue, especially for fertile and pregnant women.

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The introduction of iodized salt since the early 1900s has eliminated this condition in many affluent countries; however, in Australia, New Zealand, and several European countries, iodine deficiency is a significant public health problem.

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Congenital iodine deficiency syndrome, previously known as cretinism, is a condition associated with iodine deficiency and goiter, commonly characterised by mental deficiency, deafness, squint, disorders of stance and gait and stunted growth due to hypothyroidism.

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In rats treated with estradiol, iodine deficiency has been shown to lead to changes similar to benign breast changes that are reversible by increased iodine in the diet.

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Diagnostic workup of a suspected iodine deficiency includes signs and symptoms as well as possible risk factors mentioned above.

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General idea of whether a deficiency exists can be determined through a functional iodine test in the form of an iodine skin test.

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Iodine deficiency is treated by ingestion of iodine salts, such as found in food supplements.

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Iodine deficiency has largely been confined to the developing world for several generations, but reductions in salt consumption and changes in dairy processing practices eliminating the use of iodine-based disinfectants have led to increasing prevalence of the condition in Australia and New Zealand in recent years.

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In iodine-deficient or mildly iodine-deficient areas of Europe, iodine deficiency is frequent during pregnancy despite the widespread use of iodised salt, posing risks to the neurodevelopment of foetuses.

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In one study performed in a mildly iodine-deficient area, iodine deficiency was found to be present in more than half of breastfeeding women; in contrast, the majority of their newborns had iodine excess, mostly due to neonatal exposure to iodine-containing disinfectants.

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Iodine deficiency is the leading cause of preventable mental retardation, a result which occurs primarily when babies or small children are rendered hypothyroidic by a lack of the element.

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The addition of iodine to table salt has largely eliminated this problem in the wealthier nations, but as of March 2006, iodine deficiency remained a serious public health problem in the developing world.

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Iodine deficiency is a problem in certain areas of Europe.

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Iodine deficiency was previously a common disease in Norway, because the content of iodine in the drinking water was low.

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