What your doctor doesn't know (or care to learn) about your thyroid may not kill you, but it can sure make your life miserable...
There is a reason why thyroid disease is one of the top diseases affecting women: the inadequate "standard" tests coupled with deluded doctors. The latter persist in the delusion that any patient whose test result falls within the "norm" means the patient must not have a thyroid problem, despite the fact that she (or he, as men can be improperly diagnosed, too) exhibits and reports most or all of the classic symptoms of hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism.
There's a lot more to diagnosing and treating thyroid hormone problems than the ones detected by the standard thyroid test ordered by doctors. Unfortunately, finding the information you need, and finding doctors who understand what tests are needed and what type of drug or drugs are required to treat the actual problem is difficult. This page provides links to articles and resources where you can find more information and physicians.
on thyroid diagnosis and treatment
Eric Gordon, continued...
Some doctors may go a step further and look at your free T4 -- but not the free T3. To further complicate matters, the actual test procedures most labs use to test total T4 and T3 are essentially antiquated; there is new technology that can test the free hormone levels much more accurately.
In addition, without also testing the free T3, the doctor has no way of knowing if your body is properly converting the T4 it makes into T3. Just because the TSH level is normal doesn't mean it is present in your system in sufficient amounts, and just because your free T4 level is good doesn't mean your body is converting it like it should. "If you are exhibiting signs of low thyroid, your free T3 will be low despite your TSH being 'normal'," says Dr. Gordon. "The TSH only shows what is going on in your hypothalmus, not in your liver or elsewhere in your body."
Treating thyroid deficiency isn't always as easy as it seems when looking at disease-model medicine. In most people, their bodies convert the T4 they take into T3 just fine. For the others, "we may need to give them T4 and T3, or just T3, to see if we can fix the problem in the liver that is preventing their body from being able to do the conversion of endogenous T4 into T3."
E. Denis Wilson MD, of the eponymous Wilson's Syndrome (not to be confused with Wilson's disease), says that in times of stress, our bodies make reverse T3. In a healthy, properly functioning body, once the stressor ends, the body stops making the reverse T3 and normal T4 conversion to T3 continues. If the body continues making reverse T3, however, symptoms of low thyroid set in, such as low body temperatures, etc.
* From the notes of Dr. Gordon's On Liver, Thyroid, and Toxicity talk, 10/23/00
Websites and Articles
Out Our Necks - thyroid-info.com
More Thyroid Sites
Support for the Diagnosis and Monitoring of Thyroid Disease
I Found Particularly Interesting
Subclinical Thyroid Disease May Elevate Cardiovascular Risk (registration is free at this site)
Are Toothpastes Harming Your Thyroid? Triclosan, an antibacterial agent now nearly as ubiquitous in products as high fructose corn syrup, is potentially going to cause many health problems. This article identifies a new one.
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