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Old 04-25-2009, 06:23 PM   #1
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New here...stress the cause? and where to go from here.

Hi...I am glad this forum is available I have been learning alot!!

I just found out that I have Hashi's thyroiditis. My antibodies are elevated but not horribly. I started having symptoms last year after a major stress event that occurred in my life. I blamed all the sleepless nights and heart palps anxiety etc...on the stress.

I finally went to endo out of desperation in Jan. after 6months of sleepless nights and jitters, panicky, etc...I was going back and forth between heat intolerance, cold and super dry skin(I scratched legs until they bruised!!)one week I would be hot...next week freezing cold.

He wasn't that personable...he thought I should've gone to GP first. I knew my GP wouldn't do the labs a endo would...so I referred myself!I did eventually go to GP who offered sleep meds...of course.

In jan... my test show antibodies against thyr. then he tested me last week. elevated antibodies but normal functioning range. I saw the labs...right in the middle range of normal. my BP is normal but heart races into the 80's and I am very fit.

I am doing great today...calm and sleepy....no hyperthyroid symptoms.

I guess my question is this...could this have originated from the stressful events? can the antibodies go away on there own?
since my labs are normal range I was advised to watch for symptoms and get labs yearly unless symptomatic of hypo.

where do I go from here? supplements that help? dealing with sleep issues?panicky feeling?
thanks for being here!!

sunnie

 
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Old 04-26-2009, 05:22 AM   #2
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Re: New here...stress the cause? and where to go from here.

Stress can trigger all sorts of illnesses, but the fact is, if you've had the antibodies, it means this can possibly return. I do have a friend that needed thyroid meds in college, but never after that, but it's rare.

If you have confirmed hashis, you should watch and get your blood levels 9tsh, free t4 and free t 3) checked so you can get hormone replacement when your body needs it.

 
Old 04-26-2009, 10:09 AM   #3
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Re: New here...stress the cause? and where to go from here.

I have Graves' and mine was brought on by a stressful event. Graves' and Hashi's are autoimmune, therefore don't ever go away, however you can reach remission.

If you read some of the threads at the top of forum list you will learn a lot, or enough to help you understand anyway. I'd stay on top of the symptoms by way of journal as it makes it much easier to work with your health care professional.

Good Luck,
tup

 
Old 04-26-2009, 11:26 AM   #4
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Re: New here...stress the cause? and where to go from here.

Hashimoto's known and documented triggers are:

1) Hormonal stress (pregnancy, puberty, menopause)
2) Mononucleosis
3) Certian drugs and chemicals
4) Radiation

Now Hashimoto's often awakens before we begin to show the active symptoms you are showing. In many cases MDs look back 2-5 years prior to the detection of the antibodies. Stress unless it is an actual trauma/injury to the thyroid is not considered an active trigger to Hashimoto's.. or Graves.

You have Hashimoto's and unlike Graves it NEVER goes into remission. It does however steadily and systematically destroy your thyroid. This can take YEARS to achieve. It took mine about six total. Now what can you do? Right now you are describing hashitoxicosis symptoms. You can lower your iodine intake which should help with the rashes and itching. Basically just cut out iodized salt for a little bit. Also go to a dermatologist and look into topical treatment of the skin issues until your thyroid is dead enough to start supplementation. As soon as you drop into 30-40% of normal range you should be able to tolerate 25-50mcg of T4. This will help check antibody production, slowing down Hashimoto's progression, AND help reduce your hypoT symptoms.

In the mean time you need to test your Ft3, Ft4, TSH levels every 3 months max. I tested every 8 weeks until my FTs hit the out house. My TSH NEVER exceeded 2.077. Just not in my genetic make up, I got treatment due to my symptoms, antibody levels over 2000, Fts being below 10% of normal range, and thyroid US showing minimal blood flow and a nodule. Heck my mom and Aunts get their thyroids out and do not have TSH levels above 3.. just the way my family is made. TSH is not a valid test of our thyroid health. So we have to fight to get the MDs to look only at our Ft levels. This as you will learn is a chore.

Now you should always get a copy of your lab work. Start keeping a daily symptom log, mine included noting the following at least once a day:
I always took my Blood pressure, body temperature, and heart rate twice a day(morning with in 10 minutes of waking and in the evening before bed). Consistently low body temperature is a recognized sign of hypothyroidism.
Other symptoms I would note once daily for occurance and intensity:

Hyperthyroidism only symptoms experienced
Diarrhea
Dyslexia (difficulty with reading, calculating, thinking)
Hypersensitivity to heat (heat intolerance)
Increased appetite
Increased frequency of stools (without diarrhea)
Increased sweating
Muscle weakness (arm triceps, leg quadriceps)
Palpitations (rapid, forceful or irregular heart beats)
Tachycardia (rapid heart beat)
Tremors (shaking hands)
Hyper/Hypothyroidism symptoms experienced
Breathing Difficulties (shortness of breath)
Constipation
Constipation Aides Used
Eye problems (gritty, dry, achy, blurry, irritated, red eyes; light sensitivity; double vision)
Facial puffiness (eyes, lids too)
Fatigue (all the time, despite sleep sufficiency)
Fertility problems
Hair problems (coarse, dry texture) (hypothyroid hair loss: head and outer edge of eyebrow )
Hearing disabilities (tinnitus, ear ringing among them)
Low resistance to infections
Menstrual changes (flow, duration)
Mental challenges (forgetfulness, brain fog)
Migraines
Nail problems (dry, brittle)
PMS (premenstrual syndrome)
Sexual dysfunction (low drive)
Skin changes (dry, itchy, patchy)
Throat problems (swallowing difficulty)
Voice changes (hoarse, husky)
Weakness (overall, all the time)
Weight fluctuation (Gain hypo/loss hyper)
Hypothyroidism – Underactive thyroid symptoms experienced
Allergies (developing or worsening)
Cold body temperature (feeling cold too)
Dizziness (often accompanied with vertigo)
Mood changes
Muscle and joint aches (severe, especially hands and feet)
Sleep apnea (lapses of breath while sleeping) and snoring

Now I am rarer than your average thyroid case. I have Hashimoto's and Graves disease. Both are active, but the Graves doesn't have as much influence on me now that Hashimoto's has done its job. Graves antibodies mainly just cause vision issues now. Having the symptom log and statements from my nutritionist about my caloric intake and eating habits, my physical trainer with my activity level and daily weight and cardio regime, husband's confirmation of my symptoms, Support from my cardiologist, neurologist, neuro-opthamologist, dermatologist, allergist, ENT, and OB about my symptoms being thyroid dependent helped get a MD to treat me. I got my mother and aunts to document their thyroid issues and with a geneology showing an 80% dominance of autoimmune thyroid disorders, and my antibodies and Ft levels I was able to get treatment. Now an Endo didn't treat me, I still do not have an Endo in my pocket that I would trust to treat my thyroid and adrenal issues. They focused on the TSH and told me not to come back til it was over 2.5 or 3 or 4.2.... what ever they considered the current TSH upper limit. I did find an integrative medicine - Internal Medicine MD specialist that knows and treats thyroid patients by symptoms and a complete investigation of thyroid hormone levels. It took many inquieries of my trusted MDs to find who they would go to if they had an issue. Only one practice and name was repeatedly recognized. We have three major hospitals in town and many Endos and MDs.. only one was pointed for thyroid treatment. I tried five Endos and three other IMs.. before/while waiting to get into my current IM. They all were a waste of time and money thyroid wise.

You can not expect to find the diamond in the rough with just one Endo visit. You have to search for the MD that treats symptoms and blood levels and is up on the latest thyroid testing methodologies and levels. Finding that RARE artist is a quest befitting Don Quixote. I know I felt like I was tilting at windmills a time or two.

MG
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Old 04-27-2009, 06:55 AM   #5
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Re: New here...stress the cause? and where to go from here.

The first thing I would do is call and get a copy of your lab results. Don't accept a verbal "everything is in the normal range". Get a copy of the lab results and come back and post them here along with the lab ranges. They may not be as normal as you are being lead to believe.

 
Old 04-28-2009, 08:49 AM   #6
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Re: New here...stress the cause? and where to go from here.

thank you all for the information and responses! I am grateful for this resource. I will get a copy of my labs and post here.

as per the recommendation from mkgbrook...about getting labs done every 3 months? Well...none of my doctors would do that I don't think. Here's the scoop...endocr. said annually unless hypo symptoms present themselves in which case get bloodwork done at GP. (guess he doesn't care...doesn't sound like it anyway).

I do see oncologist and dr. every 6 months for something else so I could get bloodwork from each of them at my visits.
that would at least give me every 6 months of labs vs. annual.

what lab tests should I request specifically? I need to be direct and ask for specifics or I just know they will do general functional tests only and I could be missing something.
Also, does anyone get carb intolerant? If I eat any carbs at all...poochy belly bad...and I am very thin. is that symptomatic of this Hashi's?

again, my many thanks.
I slept sooo good last night. such a blessing as the night previous was awful.

sunnie

 
Old 04-29-2009, 05:19 AM   #7
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Re: New here...stress the cause? and where to go from here.

Sounds like a typical Endo. You can go to your GP with hypoT symptom complaints every 8-12 weeks then. Standard thyroid function blood work panel:

TSH (Sensitive/3rd Generation)
Free T3
Free T4

If you have issues swallowing or chronic lower throat pain in the location of your thyroid look into a referral for a thyroid ultrasound. You are at the stage of hurry and seek out a good MD or wait stage. What you do is up to you.

MG
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Old 05-01-2009, 11:51 AM   #8
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Re: New here...stress the cause? and where to go from here.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mkgbrook View Post
Sounds like a typical Endo. You can go to your GP with hypoT symptom complaints every 8-12 weeks then. Standard thyroid function blood work panel:

TSH (Sensitive/3rd Generation)
Free T3
Free T4

MG
That gave me a chuckle!!Yep, the symptoms are so vague and plausible enough to get checked more often than he suggested.(according to him...annually). according to pamphlet he gave me ....it says "see your dr. if you notice 10-20lb weight gain". EXCUSE ME?!! I am not waiting for that to happen!!
I picked up a copy of my labs

TSH value 0.78 (ref. range is 0.34-4.82)
FT4 value 0.80 (ref. range is .70-1.80)

so how does this look?
I am elevated antibodies as you know but the labs for that are not on here. I remember the endoc. saying it wasn't horribly elevated at all.

Last week...energy to burn,...this week....sluggish but at least I feel more calm...sleep is better.

so I will just get tested every 3 months and see how it goes. If the GP gets tired of it...too bad. It's my body. I know my body.

Any thoughts on the numbers??
Thanks again!!!

sunnie

 
Old 05-01-2009, 11:55 AM   #9
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Re: New here...stress the cause? and where to go from here.

Re: New here...stress the cause? and where to go from here.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Quote:
Originally Posted by mkgbrook
Sounds like a typical Endo. You can go to your GP with hypoT symptom complaints every 8-12 weeks then. Standard thyroid function blood work panel:

TSH (Sensitive/3rd Generation)
Free T3
Free T4

MG

That gave me a chuckle!!Yep, the symptoms are so vague and plausible enough to get checked more often than he suggested.(according to him...annually). according to pamphlet he gave me ....it says "see your dr. if you notice 10-20lb weight gain". EXCUSE ME?!! I am not waiting for that to happen!!
I picked up a copy of my labs

TSH value 0.78 (ref. range is 0.34-4.82)
FT4 value 0.80 (ref. range is .70-1.80)

so how does this look?
I am elevated antibodies as you know but the labs for that are not on here. I remember the endoc. saying it wasn't horribly elevated at all.

Last week...energy to burn,...this week....sluggish but at least I feel more calm...sleep is better.

so I will just get tested every 3 months and see how it goes. If the GP gets tired of it...too bad. It's my body. I know my body.

Any thoughts on the numbers??
Thanks again!!!

sunnie

 
Old 05-01-2009, 12:55 PM   #10
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Re: New here...stress the cause? and where to go from here.

You need a FT3 run. Given the TSH and FT4 level I bet that your FT3 is high. If that is the case you may have hypoadrenal issue causing a false suppression of your TSH and a condition known as T3 toxicosis if you start supplementing T4.

Your Ft4 levels is LOW. Given that level I would suspect a higher TSH if you were balanced thyroid wise. However I doubt that you are and as a result you need a more specialized treatment. Someone that just looks at TSH and FT4 will not be ablte to treat you properly.

MG
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Old 05-01-2009, 02:39 PM   #11
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Re: New here...stress the cause? and where to go from here.

Thanks MG,

so is it possible that a ft3 was run? They only gave me a copy of final lab. When he went over it with me...there were couple of pages of values that he went over with me. BUT the only copy I picked up is what I posted here.

AFter I find out if the ft3 was run or not run... I will post back.
Why don't doctors just do it all at once and get to the bottom of things!!I guess I have to have the knowledge they possess (or don't) in order to get quality health care.


Is the ft4 the one in which determines hypoT or it's symptoms?or is it the combo of all three?
Hypoadrenal? I will google it but if that is same as adrenal fatigue then I bet you are right!I have looked that up before and had the symptoms! If I have Hashi's can adrenal fatigue ever improve on it's own?I am not really sure what I am even asking...LOL.... hope this makes sense!

Glad I found this forum! I appreciate those of you who have BTDT!!

thanks again!!
sunnie

 
Old 05-01-2009, 09:37 PM   #12
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Re: New here...stress the cause? and where to go from here.

Sunnie123,

so is it possible that a ft3 was run?
It is possible that it was run. Get a copy of the complete lab report every time. Mine tend to run about 3 pages.. but I get a lot of stuff checked.

AFter I find out if the ft3 was run or not run... I will post back.
That will be helpful to all considered.

Why don't doctors just do it all at once and get to the bottom of things!!I guess I have to have the knowledge they possess (or don't) in order to get quality health care.
Ohhhh! Don't get me started. I do not know why and I do not bother to wonder anymore either. I place myself in the role of my own advocate and to do so I have to know the best way to treat myself.

Is the ft4 the one in which determines hypoT or it's symptoms?or is it the combo of all three?

You have many thyroid hormones. The parent and most stable thyroid hormone is L-Thyroxine. This possesses four iodine atoms this is given the abbreviation of T4. T4 is important because it is very stable, but it is also essential directly in neurological function (memory recal, brain fog, insomnia, anxiety, etc) Now T3 is a T4 molecule minus an iodine molecule. This is the active thyroid hormone that is the fuel for pretty much EVERY metabolic process: body heat, metabolism, skin regeneration, hair growth, digestion, EVERYTHING! When low you get the physical hypoT symptoms. There are also T2 and T1 versions. These are molecules possessing two and one iodine molecules respectively. The exact function of the T2 and T1 has yet to be identified. However many studies point that they are integral on a cellular level.

Now natural thyroid supplements include all four thyroid molecules. The artificial supplements like synthroid only contain T4 and your body is responsible to convert it into the T3, T2, and T1 as needed. However 2 out of 3 patients have conversion issues and can not keep thyroid levels balanced on T4 only medication. The next step if the MD/patient are adverse to the natural supplements like Armour. is to supplement Cytomel.. synthetic T3. There are no prescriptions supplements for T2 and T1. SO if you have a deficiency in this type of conversion natual thyroid hormones are your only chance.

TSH is not a thyroid hormone. It is a hormone produced by the pituitary gland that tells the thyroid how much T4 and T3 to make so that your body's demands are met. Unfortunately, if there is an issue with the pituitary or hypothalamus-pituitary-thyroid communication loop then the TSH is worthless. Depending on medications you are on the TSH may be worthless as well. TSH and T4 tests can be biased by hormone levels (estrogen/testosterone, cortisol, NSAIDs, and more). The Ft3 and Ft4 tests can not be affected in this manner.

Hypoadrenal? This is low adrenal function detected or the result of low cortisol or aldosterone or both. Adrenal fatigue may be a passing case of hypoadrenalism.. and temporary, but there are occasions when the adrenals atrophy and die. In these cases you are on supplements for life.

I will google it but if that is same as adrenal fatigue then I bet you are right!I have looked that up before and had the symptoms! If I have Hashi's can adrenal fatigue ever improve on it's own?
If you have adrenal fatigue and it is due to long term hypoT state. Getting FT3 and FT4 levels into optimal range may result in your adrenals recovering.

[B]Glad I found this forum! I appreciate those of you who have BTDT!!
thanks again!!
Your welcome. We have been there and done that in many cases. It helps me feel justified that all my issues mean something by being able to help others with what my family and I have learned.

MG
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