‘It’s not you. It’s your thyroid.’ campaign by Merck


Brand supports the 9th International Thyroid Awareness Week (ITAW) in Germany

The year’s International Thyroid Awareness Week (ITAW) runs from 22 May 2017 to 28 May 2017 and highlights some of the lesser known aspects of thyroid disorders. It is based on results from an international survey commissioned by Merck in collaboration with Thyroid Federation International (TFI). The study reveals many women blame themselves and their lifestyle choices for symptoms such as weight changes, irritability, anxiety, insomnia and excessive tiredness, not realising that a thyroid disorder could be the underlying cause.

The global omnibus survey was conducted by Censuswide with online interviews conducted from 24 January to 31 January 2017 among women aged 18 and over. There were a total of 6,171 women from seven countries worldwide – France, Italy, Mexico, Brazil, Saudi Arabia, Chile and Indonesia polled. In this study people with a history of thyroid disorders were screened out.

“The survey results highlight an important reason why millions of people go through life without being diagnosed or treated for a thyroid disorder, resulting in a poor quality of life. It reveals that thyroid disorders can be the culprit hiding behind the symptoms that many of us put down to today’s busy lifestyle. We hope it will encourage more people to speak to their healthcare professional rather than dismissing their symptoms as a normal part of everyday life,” said Ashok Bhaseen, President of TFI.

The aim of the ‘It’s not you. It’s your thyroid’ campaign is to help people recognise that they may be wrongly blaming themselves for their symptoms. The survey underlined why it can be so difficult to spot a thyroid disorder.

“Merck is partnering with TFI on the International Thyroid Awareness Week for the ninth year running. Together, we help to ensure that people have the information they need to recognise potential thyroid disorders and see their doctor, rather than blame themselves and accept how they’re feeling. A simple blood test can check whether or not the thyroid gland is functioning normally,” said Simon Sturge, Chief Operating Officer at Merck’s Biopharma Division.

Campaign materials can be accessed via the campaign website here. These include a brochure and an interactive quiz that address misconceptions about the symptoms of thyroid disorder and provide information to help people identify if they could be suffering unnecessarily.

ITAW is now an established and highly regarded global awareness campaign endorsed by the American Thyroid Association (ATA), the European Thyroid Association (ETA), and the Chinese Society of Endocrinology (CSE). For more information visit the ITAW website.