Vol 72, No 4 (2021)
Review article
Published online: 2021-12-30

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Travelers with thyroid disorders

Wiktoria Stańska1, Krzysztof Korzeniewski23
Pubmed: 35146739
IMH 2021;72(4):293-303.

Abstract

Thyroid disorders account for a majority of endocrine diseases. The most frequent among them are Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, thyroid nodules and cancer with hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism. Many thyroid patients travel a lot and therefore require appropriate guidance from their doctor. The aim of the review article is to discuss various aspects of travel in order to determine the optimal travel conditions for thyroid patients. Thyroid travelers must be well prepared for their journey. They should put particular emphasis on the choice of destination, the season and iodine resources at the planned place of stay. Before going on a journey, they are advised to check their health insurance, buy enough medications, prepare a copy of prescriptions and all other necessary documents. Depending on the means of transport, a few precautions should be taken to avoid infections or worsening of thyroid symptoms during travel. To deal with unpredictable events which might occur at the place of stay, travelers are recommended to take a first-aid kit containing basic medications. It needs to be stressed that many drugs are responsible for thyroid function disruptions and should only be used after consultation with a healthcare professional. Avoiding stress, maintaining good night’s rest, as well as following a healthy diet, are all of great importance in managing thyroid diseases. Observing a few simple rules can minimize the frequency of flare-ups and the occurrence of the life-threatening thyroid storm. Traveling is an inseparable element of life for many people. Therefore, ensuring that patients are well informed about how to travel safely may prevent unwanted health events during travel.

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