Thyroid Management

There really is a lot to talk about regarding your thyroid gland.  However, let's make it simple.  Here is how it works:  

  • Your pituitary gland (in your brain) produces something called Thyroid Simulating Hormone or TSH.  ​

  • The TSH stimulates the thyroid gland to make thyroid hormone.

  • Thyroid hormone only comes in two types:  T4 and T3.  You usually will see these on your labs and may never understood what they were.  Essentially, T4 has 4 molecules of iodine and T3 has three molecules of iodine.  

  • T4 turns into T3 by losing a molecule of iodine.  That reaction requires a mineral called Selenium.  

That's pretty much it.  Now you know how the thyroid works and what the tests are that usually get ordered.  

Now the fun part.  Many times you go to a doctor and your thyroid levels are a bit low.  The first thing to do is discuss your salt/iodine intake as many people have become salt "averse" because they have been told how bad salt is especially for your blood pressure.  In this instance, you may actually have low iodine and not a thyroid problem.  That is called "sub-clincial hypothyroidism" and is treated with iodine. 

This is not the whole picture.  There are many issues that can affect the thyroid gland and it's function.  Symptoms of low thyroid or hypothyroidism include:

  • Weight gain

  • Fatigue

  • Constipation

  • Weakness

  • Changes in your menses

  • Depression

  • Feeling cold

  • Skin changes

Symptoms of high thyroid or hyperthyroidism include:

  • Unexplained weight loss

  • Increase in sweating

  • Sleep issues

  • Feeling hot

  • Weakness

  • Tremors

  • Irregular heart beats

In order to evaluate the thyroid properly Dr. Howard will order a series of laboratory tests after a complete history and physical examination.  Additional tests may be required and may include radiology imaging or other function studies.  

Your thyroid gland may be sensitive to medications you are taking, lifestyle issues, prior surgery and more.  This is why you must have the thyroid evaluated properly. 

Dr. Howard will closely monitor your thyroid tests and make any necessary adjustments to medications/supplements as needed.  

Evaluation and management of your thyroid is part of Dr. Howard's concierge program.  Schedule your appointment today.