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VERY technical/medical questions RE Hashi's


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Old 09-19-2008, 12:33 PM   #1
scoot
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Question VERY technical/medical questions RE Hashi's

i was having some deep thoughts last night. Can anyone explain:

1.WHY do our bodies start attacking our thyroids? What kicks it off, why do our bodies suddenly start thinking that our own thyroid is an imposter?

2. WHY aren't there drugs to help teach our immune system that our thyroids are our friends, and to stop attacking it? Are there not drugs to help transplant patients' bodies accept new organs? Could something like that help us?

Hmmmm. thanks

Last edited by scoot; 09-19-2008 at 12:34 PM.

 
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Old 09-19-2008, 02:14 PM   #2
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Re: VERY technical/medical questions RE Hashi's

since medicine is not a perfect science....no one knows why our immune system goes into self destruct mode ....attacking not only the thyroid
but creating other autoimmune diseases like lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis to name a few

dont think those anti rejection drugs used for transplant patients would be helpful as they work by suppressing the immune system .....
which itself has some serious side effects such as infections ,heart disease , cancer...(they dont like to tell you about that ) so drugs arent the answer because theres always a trade off

I have read that thyroid dysfunction is not a disease in itself but a symptom of something else wrong in the body and its strongly linked with hormones

wish I had some answers ...dont we all

 
Old 09-19-2008, 02:44 PM   #3
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Re: VERY technical/medical questions RE Hashi's

Autoimmune disorders can run in families but there are events that can trigger these disorders......I know with me it was I already had thyroid issues and then I was stung by a Buck Moth Catapiller in New Orleans.....I had a severe reaction to it and took months for my arm to heal.......that was 2 years ago in April by that July I was feeling pressure in my throat and discovered my nodules.....my Endo believes the allergic reaction to the sting brought on my Hashi's.......He kept asking me if I had an allergic reaction to anything in the last 2 years........that was the only thing I could recall.....the timing could make it possible.

Our bodies put out antibodies to protect our bodies but sometimes it overdoes.......sometimes you have no explanation... I cannot prove the sting caused it but my Endo says it makes sense to him....

So there are just my thoughts........Oleander

 
Old 09-19-2008, 06:21 PM   #4
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Re: VERY technical/medical questions RE Hashi's

My first bout of thyroiditis was after a bad case of mono at age 46. This was subacute thyroiditis and doctor said my antibodies in trying to kill the mono mistakenly attacked the thyroid. Dr. at the time did not think of mono at 46, just knew I was sick and I did not go to bed and "be sick" but kept on going with two young kids and all. I think that my body did not have the time it needed to heal. I did not find out about the mono until after the diagnosis of thyroiditis, although it did definately come first. I think I also had postpartum thyroiditis after my second child, very bad year with loads of anxiety. It looks like after 20 years I would be better, but still having problems.

Mattie

 
Old 09-19-2008, 06:58 PM   #5
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Re: VERY technical/medical questions RE Hashi's

It is known and believed by the medical communtity that Hashimoto's is a result of the activation of genetic anomolie some people possess. A bulk study testing people that assumed they were normal with normal endocrine/thyroid function showed 12.6 % out of the 18000 sample set had Hashimoto's. Studies of patients with documented Hashimoto's have narrowed down the trigger to certian viruses(Mono being the biggest and certain flu strains), spawn from another autoimmune condition, times of hormonal excess/extremes (pregnancy, puberty, menopause), and just genetic dysfunction from birth (mayhap as a result of maternal passage of antibodies across the placenta barrier). All in all women are more like to get it.. we have more incidents of risk. The other thing for sure is if you have it.. your family is at higher risk. In most cases it came from some where.. be it a grandparent or great grandparent.

You can decrease the autoimmune effects with steriods, but this has its own risks. There is speculation that the only cure for Hashi's is a thyroidectomy. If the source of the AI distress is gone then the antibodies lessen. Once again this is just theory. Scientific studies are still underway and large scale investigation has yet to be persued. But there are those that are looking into cures for Hashimoto's. Currently we have to treat the Hypothyroidism it causes and do our best with the additional quirks that make Hashi's hypoT Hades!

My mother's Hashimoto's woke during her pregnancy with me. Mine woke or went into ultimate smear the thyroid mode during/after my pregnancy. My mom had a partial thyroidectomy and her Hashimoto's didn't progress at the rate mine has. My mom is one of five sisters. four of the five have AI thyroid disorders. My mom's mother mostlikely had Hashimoto's. My mom's Aunt had Graves. My mom's Grandmother and Great Aunt had to have there thyroids removed.. why maybe Hashi's/Graves as well. All in all you can not know what caused it you can only speculate and try and deduce it by tracking back to the first onset of your symptoms. It is a pity MDs are not more proactive in testing for thyroid issues.

MG
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Old 09-19-2008, 07:34 PM   #6
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Re: VERY technical/medical questions RE Hashi's

This is so interesting. My first bout came after a root canal that wasn't done properly & got infected. I insisted on having the tooth pulled even though the dentist said he would do the root canal over again for free. The next day after having the tooth pulled my thyroid blew up like a balloon & I became very hyperthyroid. It was a year before I was back on my feet.

My 2nd bout came 5 1/2 yrs ago. Now I have nodules & a goiter & thyroiditis off & on. Fam

Last edited by famnd; 09-19-2008 at 07:35 PM.

 
Old 09-19-2008, 07:35 PM   #7
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Re: VERY technical/medical questions RE Hashi's

Have there been any studies showing what percentages a Hashi person has of having other autoimmune disorders?

And are there any supplements considered beneficial, besides selenium? Perhaps Omega 3s or other anti-inflammatories?

Besides having the hashimoto antibodies, several years ago I was diagnosed with idiopathic cardiomyopathy. After lots of tests, I was told it was most likely genetic or viral in cause. Viral equating to an autoimmune problem where my immune system attacked my heart muscle, instead of the virus in my heart. There is no way to easily test this, besides taking a sample of heart tissue. And I prefer to keep my heart inside my body.

I'm curious now if I have several autoimmune things going on at the same time.

 
Old 09-20-2008, 01:39 AM   #8
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Re: VERY technical/medical questions RE Hashi's

Something intersting to add, here: Studies have shown that supplementing with Selenium reduces thyroid antibody counts. Why is this?

The reason is that Selenium is VITAL for the process of thyroid hormone production in the thyroid gland, and also for conversion of T4 to T3 in the liver and other tissues, including the brain. (Brain fog, anyone?)

My guess is that in cases of selenium deficiency, the body may begin to attack the thyroid gland. It might also be that the immune system neeeds the selenium to properly control its reaction to thyroid tissue, but I have not read anything saying that.

Drug therapy for reducing your antibody count? I have a tendency to trust nature, when I can, and if I can buy it at a vitamin/health food store and get good results, that will be my first stop.
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Old 09-20-2008, 08:10 AM   #9
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Re: VERY technical/medical questions RE Hashi's

It would be interesting to see a study done on Hashi people......see what is the common thread.....

I know I have had TONS of dental work and root canals done....they use plastics and different things with crowns and fillings that the body does not like... My oldest daughter is recovering from 2 bad root canals as we speak....she has really suffered and was allergic to something they used.

I also had Mono age 17...

My Mother had nodules and a "tumor" tt done in her 40's...probably had Hashis.

I also suffered from Anxiety from age 12........I rarely have it now....but have to wonder if related......

Seems like there has been mention of all of the above.....

Just interesting.......

Oleander

 
Old 09-20-2008, 08:43 AM   #10
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Re: VERY technical/medical questions RE Hashi's

Also interesting Oleander - talking about plastics and stuff. I had an inner ear replacement with prosthesis placed about 2 years ago. That is when my latest symptoms starting roaring. I wonder if it is immune response. That side of my thyroid has the most nodules, and I have drainage (yucky i know) from that side of my throat/ear/sinus all the time. I think I had rather had stayed deaf.
Mattie

 
Old 09-21-2008, 05:16 AM   #11
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Re: VERY technical/medical questions RE Hashi's

My doctor is one of those who believes if ALL bases are covered then Hashi's can be reversed. He doesn't believe it's something which can be done over night or in a few months. He thinks it can take a few years. I'm hoping he is right, but i'm not pinning my hopes on it. After taking a minimum of 8 years (high antibodies back in 2000, but Endo refused me treatment) to finally get diagnosed i'm content to be on meds for now.

In my case i also had difficulty digesting protein due to lack of pancreatic enzymes. This undigested protein would ferment and cause inflamation of my thyroid (according to my doctor). I don't know whether this is so, but have read information on the net where it is stated that undigested food particles can cause all manner of havoc within the body ranging from auto immune diseases to athritis type symptoms to allergies to food intolerances and a heap of other things. My doctor also said he sees a lot of people with digestive issues along with their thyroid conditions. I can't get over how many things seem to go hand in hand with thyroid issues.

On the other hand, if your meals are not digested properly and leads to malabsorption of nutrients wouldn't this mean that your immune system would lower due to insufficient nutrients? As far back as 1998 my blood tests were all coming back with low Neutrophils and the lab would always say "moderate neutropenia due to drug allergy, viral illness and SLE are possible causes". My then doctor ignored this and kept saying everything was okay, but i've read that destruction of white blood cells can occur as a result of antibodies attacking the cells. My current doctor says he can see from those old tests that my immune system was compromised. Now if as early as 1998 my white blood cell counts weren't good in some areas eg: neutrophils and lymphocytes, and if this can be as a result of antibodies attacking them then it could be occuring at my thyroid at the same time and for the same length of time.

Thyroid issues appear to run on my dad's side of the family. Also i had an extremely bad virus back in 1991 and was bedridden for 3 weeks. I'm wondering whether this virus was what kick started things off, even though it does run in my dad's family. I've never been pregnant so i know it didn't occur due to pregnancy. The first time anybody had ever tested my antibodies was in 2000, but i'd say the antibodies would have been building for a while prior.

 
Old 09-21-2008, 01:13 PM   #12
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Re: VERY technical/medical questions RE Hashi's

I have Graves' and was treated with RAI 5 years ago. Mine was brought on during my infertility journey, that ended with no sucess. During this same period my mother died, and one of my staff quit on me 2 days after our embryo transfer, then to top it all off she tried to sue me through labor standards, hence Graves' brought on through an extemely stressful time. It is not a known fact, however, there seems to be quite a common denominator around the stress filled situations that seem to bring the disease to life.

Graves' & Hashimotos are autoimmune diseases that affects the body in many ways. And the mind too. I've since learned so much and now wish I wouldn't have gone the RAI route. Knowing what I know now, I'll always have Graves' even if my thyroid has been ablated. Trying for remission would have been my target. My personal view was that if I went the ATD route my endo would have had to spend too much time with me, therefore, dosed me with 10mcs and sent me on my way. That seems where my trouble really began, as she left me with no meds for 6 yes 6 months. Getting my labs to what I call normal range for me, was very frustrating and after 18 long months finally got a dose that suited me. She kept flip flopping back and forth between .5omgs to.100mgs, which in my opinion is too radical. She never listened to how I felt and continued to say I was normal because that is what the bloodtests say. Thats when I dropped her, and just went back to my GP, explained to him that I could not & would not respect her knowledge reguarding this situation. I told him I NEEDED someone to listen to me, and work hand in hand with me as I was the only one how truly knew how I felt, and also knowing this is a forever project. I asked him why I couldn't .88mgs, and keep moving up in slow incriments. Same dose as I am on today. Go figure...

Anyways, since then, I have struggled with depression & anxiety. So much so, I recently retired from my work as I can longer handle ANY stressful situations. I often wonder if my depression is part & pacel of My graves'. I am now in the care of psychiatrist, and suggested to him for me to try T3/T4 Protocal, as I have read those suffering depression may not be converting t4 to T3 properly. We still haven't gone there, but who knows, some day we might.

In the mean time I continue to educate myself, always request a copy of my labs. It seems if my FT4 is @ about 15 I don't feel good, but if it is around 19 or 20 I feel great, yet I am still in range as for as norms are concerned.(normal FT4 range...8-23). My TSH has hardly moved since RAI and has never come higher than .3, which is at the very low end of normal.

I truly believe I had Graves' prior to fertility treatment, and also believe Graves' was why I couldn't carry a pregnancy. I've always been a go getter, and until my dose was properly corrected, I felt like I was a zombie.

The moral of the story is... know what you are facing, learn as much as you possibly can, and find a doctor who is willing to work with you and not be offended or intimidated by your knowledge.

my 2 cents,
tup

 
Old 09-21-2008, 02:00 PM   #13
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Re: VERY technical/medical questions RE Hashi's

Autoimmune diseases do tend to cluster with their genetic neighbors. Having one means you have a greater than normal chance of developing another disease in the cluster but does not mean you're destined to come down with any more or all of them. Hashi's is one of the most common autoimmune disorders and the majority of people with it don't get new AI disorders.


Hashi's autoimmune cluster includes Celiac disease and Dermatitis Herpetiformis, type 1 diabetes, Sjogren's syndrome, juvenile arthritis and Vitiligo.


I have Celiac, Hashi's, Sjogren's, juvenile arthritis and maybe Vitiligo. I'm just lucky that way. Some researchers have theorized that having Celiac, or an abnormally permeable small intestine, may be the key, the trigger, that starts up the weird immune system reactions - leaky gut syndrome.

Last edited by AuntieLeela; 09-21-2008 at 02:01 PM.

 
Old 09-21-2008, 02:36 PM   #14
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Re: VERY technical/medical questions RE Hashi's

here is a list I have found so far as to triggers of thyroid dysfunction
virus ...pregnancy...menopause...stress...grie f ..death of loved one...diet...
lifestyle...environmental factors such as chemicals... and Im sure there are more if you look hard enough....to me it looks like life itself is the trigger but the body should be able to cope with the ups and downs
the question is why doesnt it?
heres my theory ...the last one...environment
since the industrial revolution there has been recorded a 50% reduction of male fertility , thats a clue, it is since then that chemicals started to be introduced into our lives and have accelerated to the point where we accept it as normal..now thyroid problems havent been so well recorded, it may not have been diagnosed and since it is a largely female problem it would have been in the past dismissed as something else like hysteria by male quacks
males still dominate the medical profession and they have only recently been able to map the female genome as we are complex

now take a look at your environment ..pollution is in the very air you breathe
and fine particles of pollution is known to lodge in your heart ,lungs, kidneys,liver ...the body cannot get rid of it thats why the elderly are more likely to die on a high pollution day
and why has thyroid problems reached epidemic proportions in recent times?
plastics are known endocrine disruptors and yet it is everywhere ..not just in dental fillings but even our food comes wrapped in plastics ...plastics leach a chemical that mimics estrogen and has been recorded as turning male alligators into female in a polluted waterway ....so whats it doing to us?
disrupting our very core ...that I believe is where the trigger is ,leaving us vulnerable to develop all manner of health issues
and dont forget the water ..theres another chemical cocktail

 
Old 09-22-2008, 05:33 AM   #15
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Re: VERY technical/medical questions RE Hashi's

I"m with you Myth. I too feel a lot of health issues across the board are related to pollution, plastics, our water, stress levels in today's society, chemicals and the list goes on. Perhaps some of us are hardy enough to cope and not be affected by all these things, while others are in some way 'weaker' and more predisposed to being affected.

I too couldn't fall pregnant, but nobody could figure out why. Fertility drugs only made things worse. I was offered IVF, but i refused. I felt they were simply trying to make money out of me. I knew there had to be a reason why i couldn't even conceive, considering there was nothing wrong with either myself or my then husband. One specialist got me to track my morning temperature for 3 months. My temperature was all over the place and he said my chart was useless as he couldn't read a thing off it. To me that fact means that something was definitely wrong if my temperature wasn't doing what it was supposed to do at certain times of the month.

It wasn't until i went to the naturopath 2 and a half years ago to get herbs to settle and make my cycles regular again that i began experiencing those obvious signs of ovulation each month. I had never had that before. Now that i've been on thyroid and adrenal meds my cycles seem to be fixing themselves up and i'm hoping to soon wean myself totally off the naturopath's herbal mix.

I myself know stress is my worst enemy. It affects my sleep and i can't eat and i then tend to worry even more. These days i try to keep away from potentially stressful situations and at work i'll ignore things, whereas before i used to do 10 things at once while others didn't bother. Now i take a leaf out of their book.

Getting back to chemicals and plastics...... when i'm out shopping i see things like ready made soup in plastic containers for sale in the refrigerated isle of the supermarket. I imagine that soup was likely hot when poured into the plastic containers???? Also take away places selling hot foods in plastic containers or styrofoam, tea/coffee in styrofoam cups. It makes me cringe nowadays and i refuse to buy hot foods in plastic. At work i'm on one of the OHS committees and when we get together for meetings there are always styrofoam cups, so i've learnt to bring my own ceramic mug. I too have read that styrene in styrofoam will mimic estrogen. Some foods naturally contain low to moderate or high levels of styrene and i'm not sure whether that has a bearing on things.

It's hard not to be sensitive about every little thing, but it does make you wonder and when you are sick already it highlights the fact that things could get worse if you don't make some changes. If you are already genetically predisposed to having something, why make things worse.

 
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