10 Things Your Doctor Won't Tell You About Your Thyroid Condition

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If you have a thyroid condition, there are 10 things that doctor usually won't tell you. Knowing this information, however, could be a key to feeling well.

1. Synthroid is not the only brand of levothyroxine.

There are several brand names, and many generic versions of levothyroxine. They are all considered to be safe and effective. (But keep in mind some potency variations between different makers of levothyroxine.

) Also, it's important to know that Sythroid contains lactose and acacia, which can cause sensitivity and allergic reactions in some patients.There is a also a hypoallergenic, liquid, softgel capsule formulation of levothyroxine, Tirosint, designed for people who have absorption problems and/or allergies to fillers and dyes found in many levothyroxine tablets. 

2. Treating patients who have elevated thyroid antibodies but normal TSH levels may help prevent full-blown hypothyroidism.

If you have elected thyroid peroxidase (TPO) antibodies and are diagnosed with Hashimoto's thyroiditis, but you have a normal TSH test result, researchers have found that use of preventative thyroid drug treatment may slow the progression to overt hypothyroidism, or even you from becoming hypothyroidism in the future. Read more now. 

3. You can get a thyroid blood test without your doctor's approval, prescription or cost markup.   

A number of companies, including MyMedLab and HealthCheckUSA offer what's known as "direct-to-consumer" laboratory testing.

You can get a full range of thyroid tests, including thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH), free thyroxine (free T4), free triiodothyronie (free T3), TPO antibodies, reverse T3 (RT3), and thyroid stimulating immunoglobulins (TSI) at prices that are far less than most laboratories and doctors' offices. You don't need your a doctor's prescription or approval.

Insurance coverage, however, does vary by company. (Note: there are some some states, including New York, New Jersey, Maryland, and Rhode Island, that prohibit use of direct-to-patient laboratory testing.

4. Thyroid disease is not always as "easy to treat."

It's a popular myth among physicians that thyroid disease is extremely easy to diagnose and equally easy to treat. You may often hear that hypothyroidism is completely fixed by "taking one little pill a day." For many thyroid patients, this is far from the truth. Find out more about this.

5. Panic attacks, anxiety disorder, and heart palpitations may actually be your first signs of hyperthyroidism.
 

If you are experiencing panic attacks or heart palpitations, or have been diagnosed with anxiety disorder, these may be the first signs that you are hyperthyroid. Learn more now

6. An inconclusive or indeterminate fine needle biopsy of a thyroid nodule does not always mean surgery.  

In the past, if you have a fine needle aspiration (FNA) biopsy of a thyroid nodule, and the results were inconclusive, surgery would be recommended to remove your thyroid, and conduct a pathology assessment to evaluate whether you have thyroid cancer. In many cases, the nodule turned out to be benign, but the patient ended up permanently hypothyroid without a thyroid gland.

The Veracyte Afirma Thyroid Analysis is an additional test performed on a biopsy sample that can conclusively diagnose or rule out cancer, , and prevent needless surgery. 

7. Muscle and joint pain are fairly common symptoms that accompany thyroid conditions, and there are things you can do to treat these complaints.

There are a variety of muscle and joint-related symptoms of hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism, including carpal and tarsal tunnel syndrome, fibromyalgia, frozen shoulder, and more.  There are also a variety of treatments to help.

8. If you're losing your hair, you don't have to just "live with it." There are a variety of things you can do to help.

There are a number of practical things, both alternative and conventional, that you can do to slow or stop hair loss associated with thyroid disease.

9. Having a thyroid problem after pregnancy is common, and may be the reason you're having trouble losing weight, or are unusually tired. 

Thyroiditis, hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism frequently develop after having a baby. Here are some frequently asked questions, as well as the answers to help understand post-partum thyroid conditions.

10. Being exhausted all the time is not "normal" for women, for people your age, and for people with thyroid problems.

There are various solutions, including herbal remedies, vitamins and supplements, to deal with fatigue and exhaustion related to hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism, including one obvious treatment many people overlook. Read more now

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