Graves’ disease, an autoimmune disease, is the most common cause of hyperthyroidism. The condition makes a person's immune system produce abnormal types of antibodies. These abnormal antibodies make the thyroid gland produce more thyroid hormones. Eventually, the thyroid gland enlarges, which can result in a goiter. For reasons that doctors don't yet understand, autoimmune thyroid diseases like Graves disease are much more common in women and are most likely to occur in teens and young and middle-aged adults.
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