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High Thyroid Hormone Level May Put Older Adults at Risk

Elevated presence of FT4 increases the chance of stroke, heart attack and hardening of the arteries

A woman receives thyroid exam

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Middle-aged and older people with high thyroid hormone levels had double the odds of artery calcification and hardening of the arteries.

High levels of thyroid hormone may put older adults at risk for heart disease and death.

Middle-aged and older people with high or high-normal levels of a thyroid hormone called FT4 had double the odds of high coronary artery calcification scores, an indicator of hardening of the arteries.

Elevated FT4 levels were also associated with an 87 percent higher risk of having a stroke or heart attack and double the risk of death related to hardened arteries. FT4 is a hormone produced by the thyroid gland that helps control the rate at which the body uses energy.

The findings indicate that the thyroid hormone can help identify older adults at risk of artery calcification.

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