Risk Factors of Thyroid Eye Disease

Approximately one million Americans are diagnosed with Graves’ disease each year. Women are much more likely than men to get Graves disease, but both men and women can develop thyroid eye disease. Cigarette smokers are at significantly increased risk to develop the eye disease, and when they do, often have more severe and prolonged activity that threatens vision. In addition, it is critically important that the thyroid hormone levels are stabilized. Unstable thyroid hormone levels – either too much or too little – is associated with worsening eye disease. Low vitamin D and selenium levels may also be associated with worse thyroid eye disease.