Graves’ Disease is the most common cause of hyperthyroidism. It has multiple manifestations and it requires appropriate diagnostic and therapeutic management. Once it has been established that the patient is hyperthyroid and the cause is GD, the patient and physician must choose between three effective and relatively safe initial treatment options: antithyroid drugs (ATDs), radioiodine (RAI) therapy, or thyroidectomy. RAI has been used to treat hyperthyroidism for more than seven decades. It is well tolerated and complications are rare, except for those related to orbitopathy. Most patients are effectively treated with one therapeutic dose of I-131. The patient usually notes symptomatic improvement within 3 weeks of therapy. However, the full therapeutic effect takes 3 to 6 months because stored hormone must first be released. Radioiodine therapy may not initially be effective in up to 10% of patients. They require repeat treatment, usually with a higher administered dose.
Part of the book: Graves' Disease