Impaired Risk Review: Hypothyroidism
An underactivity of the thyroid gland, hypothyroidism, is quite common—affecting probably one percent of the population and rising to five percent over the age of 60. The thyroid gland is responsible for controlling the metabolic rate of most of the body. When the rate slows, both mental and physical systems are involved. In its severest form, called myxedema, it is capable of causing permanent dementia and even death. Thankfully, however, it is generally an easily treatable disorder.