Congenital Hypothyroidism is a condition in which a baby is born with a deficiency in the production of a thyroid hormone called thyroxine. It occurs in approximately 1 in every 3,000 live births1. The thyroid gland is a butterfly-shaped gland in the neck which produces thyroxine. Thyroxine is essential for the normal growth and development of a child. Congenital Hypothyroidism can cause poor growth and affect the brain development in babies if it is not detected and treated early.
Congenital Hypothyroidism is mainly due to a defect in the development of the thyroid gland. This leads to an absent or poorly developed thyroid gland or an abnormal positioning of the gland. In other cases, the thyroid gland has developed normally but is unable to produce enough thyroxine because it lacks certain enzymes. Both of these cases may either be due to genetic reasons or have no identifiable cause.