Harvard Heart Letter

Thyroid hormone: How it affects your heart

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The thyoid gland, which wraps around the windpipe, releases hormones that have wideranging effects on the body.

Too little or too much of this crucial hormone can contribute to heart problems.

Located at the base your throat, the butterfly-shaped thyroid gland releases hormones that affect every organ in your body—especially your heart. Thyroid hormone influences the force and speed of your heartbeat, your blood pressure, and your cholesterol level. As a result, a malfunctioning thyroid gland can cause problems that masquerade as heart disease or make existing heart disease worse.

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