Treatment for Graves’ disease includes daily medications, radioactive iodine, or thyroid surgery. Medications can be used for several months to try and control (but not cure) the hyperthyroidism. If the medications do not control the disease, surgery or radioactive iodine may be necessary. Radioactive iodine and surgery are used to manage the disease, but can cause the thyroid to be underactive and you must then take medication to replace the thyroid hormone.
Therapy depends on the presence of eye symptoms, the presence and size of thyroid nodules, and your preferences. Surgery is generally considered if the thyroid also has nodules, the gland is very large, the patient has eye disease (which may worsen if radioactive iodine is given), or if the patient wants to avoid radioactive iodine.