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HELP - thyroid problem or ?

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Old 11-10-2006, 05:44 PM   #1
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 9
JennyG. HB User
Hair Loss - Thyroid Or Stress???

confused: Please help! Back in March after feeling exhausted all the time, cold when others were not, losing hair, eyebrows thinning, gaining weight like nobody's business, and split nails, I went to my PCP. My TSH level was 3.8 (their scale is .4-4.0) They also checked the T3 & Free T4. I was within "normal range" so my Dr. said that it was unnecessary to prescribe any thyroid medicine. I couldn't take how I was feeling and was freaked out by the rapid hair loss so immediately changed Dr.'s. Dr. M prescribed 50mcg of levothyroxin and after 6 weeks my hair stopped falling out. Some of the symptoms subsided and I felt better but not great. They checked my TSH in June and it was 2.8. My hair started falling out again in Sept. I tryed to ignore it but it kept getting worse so I saw the Dr. a month ago. The TSH was now 2.1 but the hair was still falling out. She didn't want to increase the thyroid medicine. A few days later, I saw another Gen. Pract. to get her opinion. She agreed with me that it sounded like a thyroid problem but didn't write that in the chart but did send me to have another blood test. This time (within 1 week) my TSH went from 2.1 to 2.5. The Free T4 .82 on a scale of (.61-1.12). The T3 was 105 on a scale of (87-178). She referred me to a dermatologist. His nurse asked me if there was male pattern baldness in the family and I said yes (Dad). I was very ancy when I went to the appt. as I just got news that my Dad had a heart attack and he and my Mom were 7 hours away. It just came out of my mouth. Five minutes later in comes the Dermatologist like his pants were on fire. He would not let me ask ANY questions nor did he ask me any except to make a comment that I was there for hair loss. He looked at my hair and the chart and said you have Male Pattern Baldness and besides that the hair is falling out due to stress. He was in and out within 2 minutes tops. I find this very hard to believe with the symptoms I'm having. What about the dry skin (never had in my life), eyebrows falling out (I lost 1/2 off one in a week a couple of weeks ago), complete exhaustion, never feel rested, hair falling out REALLY bad and dry and brittle (never had this in my life), cold when others are hot, eating 1400 cal. a day and working out for an hour 6 days a week with just to "maintain" my weight. I weigh 226 and the scale will not budge. My regular PCP had her nurse tell me that she didn't think it was necessary to refer me to Endocrinology. I called today and asked that she rethink this as I don't buy the hair falling out from stress. I would IF I didn't have these same symptoms as before. I am considering upping the medicine from .50 to .66 on my own. Also I made an appt. to have acupuncture. However, in the back of my mind, I think what IF I increase the medicine and make things worse if it is hair loss from stress. Any thoughts/advice are greatly appreciated. Please tell me your opinions.


Last edited by JennyG.; 11-10-2006 at 06:27 PM. Reason: want to make this stand out more

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Old 11-11-2006, 10:02 AM   #2
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 35
feathermaid HB User
Re: HELP - thyroid problem or ?

Gosh Dogs-Why can't we find Dr.s who will treat the patient and their symptoms and let the tests show afterwards what effect it has. I know the oath is to do no harm but they ain't helping either....You can have tests done at 15 different labs and all 15 will be different. Those values are just that, values. Do Dr.s identify Lupus by ANA test alone, no -It is by symptoms. Has your Dr. tested your ANA? A good fresh start. But even if neg. you have enough symtoms to treat. So find someone who will. My hubbie has hashies, his levels are normal with med. and he finally has hair back on his legs. Good Luck

Old 11-11-2006, 11:49 AM   #3
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Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 191
noodles3 HB User
Re: HELP - thyroid problem or ?

I would get an endo that recognizes that the hair loss is symptomatic of something else going wrong in the body. I keep reading the new cutoff is 3.0 - anything above is hypo. Since you have symtoms a think it's reasonable to try treating it. I am in a similar situation and my endo did take into account my symptoms.

Have you had your ferritin level checked? Low ferritin, hair loss and hypo seem to be connected sometimes from what I am reading.

I lost my dad and the stress is unbelievable....I do think this caused the shed to get worse, this can happen even 6 months after the trauma. But...I had the hair loss before the death so I know that it isn't totally related to that. I'm so sorry about your father... when my dad died it was the biggest physical shock to my system that I have ever felt when I lost him. I never saw my body react that way before and I am still deeply grieving.

Old 11-11-2006, 12:58 PM   #4
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 9
JennyG. HB User
Re: HELP - thyroid problem or ?

Thankf for sharing. No, the only thing the Dr.'s want to test is TSH. I have to be VERY persistent to get them to check the T4 & T3. I'm hopeful that they will change their mind and refer me to an endocrinologist. I upped it this morning myself from 50mcg to 62mcg. I don't think that's enough to cause any harm and hopefully will help!

I did go through some very heavy stress this past summer. My Mom is a fragile diabetic and her blood sugar can take a nose dive very and she was home alone. I live 20 min. away but my brother is 1 mile away IF he is at home. One time was really horrible as I flew over to their house and she was unconscious on the floor. I did not know how to use her new glucomenter nor could I find the glucose emergency shot to give her. I had called 911 on the way over but the ambulance had not arrived. Her blood sugar was so low that it wouldn't register. She was taken to the ER, treated and released. There were several similar incidents during the summer. Another time she fell and cracked her head down to the skull required 3 rows of stitches in side the head too and staples on the outside.

Also my workload since Spring has been uncontrollable. It's a very demanding job with many shortdeadlines. There is lots of pressure. I work overtime every week. Thank god it has finally slowed down. I have been trying to get out of that place for the last two years.

Have either of you tried any products for hair loss? The Dr. told me to use Rogaine.

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