View Full Version : Hypothyroidism

08-17-2006, 01:50 PM
Does anyone here have hypothyroidism? My grandma has it and now my OB/GYN thinks that is what I have and sent me for a bloodtest. Are you on Synthroid for it? What symptoms did you have and did the medicine clear it up pretty quickly? Thanks :)

08-17-2006, 03:13 PM
I have it Jessica. I take synthroid and it really does work well. You just have to have your blood tested to be sure you are getting the correct dose. Right now, I think mine might be a little low as I am very sleepy more than usual. I let mine go for a long time thinking it was stress and was close to going into a coma before I decided to go be checked. Within a week or so, I felt like a new person.

Heatherway Shelties

08-17-2006, 03:56 PM
Hi I have it. I take synthroid also. It works wonders. It does run in families.

08-17-2006, 04:47 PM
Oh wow, Carolyn..... I didn't know it could be that serious! Glad I'm getting it checked out, then. What symptoms were you having?
I'm glad that both of you have it regulated, now. Hopefully that's what it is and it will be the same for me.

08-17-2006, 04:49 PM
I have Graves Disease which begins as hyperthyroidism and then changes to hypothyroidism. I had to have my thyroid gland killed by taking a radioactive pill about 10 years ago. Now I take Levoxyl once a day (it is about the same as Synthroid). This runs in families too.

08-17-2006, 04:52 PM
My 15 year old was diagnosed in Feb with hyperthyroidism. She has been on medicine since (methimazole) and is now a little on the hypo side, so is also taking synthroid (generic) as well. She went from being hot all the time, never sleeping, and failing all her classes (we thought it was her ADHD) to being tired, gaining weight, and feeling horrible and cold. She is better now, but has to have blood work every 3 weeks still. Still not regulated totally, but they told us Tuesday that they hope she can get off meds within 6 months. that she is doing wonderful. Just do what your doctor says. The meds will make you feel so much better. Eating correctly helps tremendously as well.

08-17-2006, 05:02 PM
Debbie, you described it to a "T"! I have to have my blood work done every 6 months and this has been going on for 10 years. Mine keeps changing all the time so they are very careful to keep check on me!

08-17-2006, 06:50 PM
I, too, have it. I'm on synthroid now, but it doesn't seem to help, and gives me some side effects I don't like. I WAS on Cytomel, and loved it -- it made me feel so much better, and I was losing weight. But it costs about $80 a month, and I just can't afford it. Most of my meds I get free from the companies because my income is low, but there is no program like that for the Cytomel.

08-17-2006, 07:19 PM
Bobbi, I hope you can find a medication that makes you feel better without costing an arm and a leg!

08-17-2006, 08:07 PM
It just dawned on me...are you the Jessica from DollTalk who has a daughter Anna Lisa? I was recently diagnosed as Hypothyroid, and put on Levothyroxine. More bloodwork 30 days later, it said Hyperthyroid. The Dr. explained that it had over-corrected (but it was working), and reduced it to 1/2 a tablet, to get it normal, in between. I had the bloodwork redone yesterday, 30 days later, so I don't have the newest results yet. Since it causes slow metabolism, I asked the Dr. if I would start losing weight now. (it had suddenly ballooned, even with a tiny appetite). He said that I should start seeing results from exercise now. (I'll have to try that sometime lol. More regularly, anyway). I was diagnosed after I went to get an irregular heartbeat checked on. My heart had fluttered, then beat irregularly a few times, then raced and beat hard for an hour, over 100 beats per minute. I felt really anxious, and thought I was going to die...and found out those feelings were one of the symptoms lol. Since then, I get the fast heartbeat, that I can feel thumping, when I'm feeling anxious or worried.

08-17-2006, 08:09 PM
I got some books from the library, and fortunately came across my notes, just now. Some of the pointers were more medical, some more psychological (I like the psych one. That's "up my alley"). "Thyroid Power", by Shames.
One pointer, rather than "why me?" consider this..."Each person is given a certain physical and emotional constitution within which to stretch and grow. With this foundation, a person can build as strong and beautiful a body as possible, while gaining acceptance of one's personal familial inheritance and environmental circumstances. The lessons learned from this personal journey are a major part of a person's spiritual path".
Symptoms of low thyroid (I wrote down the ones I had)
* unusual fatigue unrelated to exertion.
* feel chillier than most people (I freeze in restaurants with high airconditioning)
* have feelings of anxiety that sometimes lead to panic
* have trouble with weight, often eating lightly, yet still not losing a lb.
* feel mentally sluggish, unfocused, or unusually forgetful, even though not old enough to have Alzheimers.
* suffer from dry skin.
* go through periods of depression, seemingly out-of-proportion to life events.
* hair feels like straw, dry and easily falls out (I had blamed that on my hair being "fried" by a perm...but that had been years before).
* feel utterly exhausted by evening, yet have trouble sleeping. wake up tired.
that was just the ones I wrote down, but if you said yes to 4 or more, you could have an undiagnosed or under-treated thyroid problem.
cont. next post...

08-17-2006, 08:09 PM
Once your situation is diagnosed, it can then be treated optimally.
For some, the function most affected is the energy level. For others, personality (low mood), or lowered resistance to infection.
Some have many symptoms, others only a few.
Low thyroid conditions do not cause people to die. Instead, they cause people to feel half-dead, or sometimes to wish they were dead.
Symptoms range from annoying to debilitating, with some in between.
Almost any serious physical or mental stress might trigger the primed immune system into acting against the thyroid, one of its favorite targets.
High stress of daily life, anxiety, and depression have deleterious effects on the immune system.
Immune-restoring activities are: aerobic exercise, muscle building, slow stretching.
Low thyroid masquerades as mental illness. One of the most common symptoms is depression.
Anxiety, panic attacks, phobias, dementia, increased sleepiness, loss of ambition, and several other moods have been linked to abnormalities in the thyroid gland or thyroid hormone function.
cont. next post...

08-17-2006, 08:10 PM
Even relationship stress can trigger a thyroid imbalance, and vice versa. All too frequently, the underlying problem is missed. People may say "Oh, you're a low-energy person.
One sufferer said "I kept trudging along, dragging through each day, ate more sweets, hoped things would get better, or at least not get much worse". The actual medical condition went undiagnosed for years.
Low energy. Some products we use to reduce stress can interfere with sleep patterns, including sugar.
Healthier food is your best additional medicine. Fast food is your worst poison.
Fatigue due to lack of exercise. Enjoyable exercise and exertion actually increases energy for the rest of the day, but it's easy to forget that when you're fatigued. Frequently, tired people feel they just don't have the energy to do any exercise at all. To determine if that's your problem...force yourself to go on a brisk walk. If you feel better during, immediately after, or the day after, you are probably suffering from insufficient exercise. Start simply and cautiously.
cont. next post...

08-17-2006, 08:11 PM
Depression as a cause of low energy. Depression with no obvious cause. Very frequently, low thyroid is a direct cause of depression. Whatever the cause, it's important that depression be treated properly.
It would be hard for mildly low-thyroid person to sustain a relationship with a high-thyroid person (energetic).
Hypothyroid may cause altered perceptions about self and others, periodically more critical, irritable, less patient.
Fatigued, sometimes depressed, generally moody, need additional help to get things done. Become very tired, feel brain isn't functioning well, causing you to make less-than-wonderful decisions at times. Husband can handle these changes more effectively if he understands the complexity of her metabolic shutdown.
Lower self-esteem, lower energy, lower stamina.
Empowerment = having the skills, tools, information, and support with which to make healthy changes. Not only cope with, but excel = empowered.
Use the information about stress to better protect yourself from the noxious agents threatening your thyroid function.
Avoid sugar, caffeine, Equal & Nutri-sweet. Thyroid function improves with less sugar, and with a high-quality multi-vitamin and mineral.
cont. next post...

08-17-2006, 08:11 PM
Make better friend with yourself, and boost your self-esteem (common thread among thyroid patients with low self-esteem = family rejection in early life). Often are extremely sensitive. Their overly-watchful immune system at times protects them from the wrong things - attacks their own tissues. Those challenged in this particular way (thyroid) need to make better friends with themselves and boost their self-esteem. (if you don't like yourself, your immune system could perceive you as the enemy). (yikes!)
Carefully consider all sources of input into your life, and screen out those that may be draining your energy and making you feel worse.
Since the mind and body are inter-connected, for optimal recovery one must carefully guard one's thoughts, weeding out those which are immune-disruptive.
De-stress. Avoid people who demoralize, "energy suckers" who manipulate and drain energy to feed their own needs. Certain people may affect your health in ways hat are immuno-disruptive. Learn to respect and honor yourself, define boundaries within a loving relationship. Redefine needs and desires, identify what you would and would not do, what you expect others to do. Reorganize family around a democratic pattern, not autocratic. Empower each other with strength and courage to set the limits. Learn to find a balance, and recognize when they lost it.
Other common threads among the Thyroid patient support group:
perfectionism, addictions, compulsive behavior.
Perfectionism = afraid to take risks, fearful they might not to a job perfectly.
Dependent vs independent was a struggle.
Most saw a tendency to assume role of victim.
Most felt a lack within themselves, as if they had a serious defect that could never be corrected, no matter how much they tried to rebuild themselves.
Unhealthy coping patterns they had developed include compulsive behavior...overindulge, do something compulsively, like eat, spend, talk.
In an attempt to feel better, they often justify the behavior by saying "I deserve this". or "I need this in order to cope".
(gee, those sound like familiar quotes from my compulsive doll-buying days lol). In order to achieve a more positive sense-of-balance, they learned to ask "What do I really need?", rather than act in a "driven" manner. Slow down the behavior, identify the difference between acting and reacting, learn to identify the triggers to the reactive behavior. They began to see they were pushing (to do, create, express) in order to avoid facing their own unpleasant feelings.
One woman's insight: "I now think of my immune system as run by a kindly, wise diplomat, one who prefers to have no enemies, one who sees that everything has its right place and function, it weeds out the enemies. But now I try to instruct it to do its rightful job only when absolutely necessary, only after gentle diplomacy has been fully explored."
Learn to monitor yourself more carefully, pay attention to subtle cues that influence you when your immune system is going on red alert.
Directing your anger outward (blaming, criticizing) or inward (lowered self-esteem and depression) is equally ineffectual and damaging.
Anger management can be a key to stabilizing thyroid and improving overall health.
Immune-inhancers are...detach yourself from negative behavior of family members, clear communication, honor your own pace and abilities, without judgement or comparison. Unlearn poor habits and replace them with kind and respectful self-care.
If you had over-bearing parents, or teachers, in your early years, you may have developed a pattern for allowing others to define you, and your immune balance.
See the illness as a teacher, rather than as a plague, and you will feel less victimized and more in-control, which leads to a greater sense of autonomy and enjoyment of life.

(I believe that mind and body are interconnected, because when I am stressed out, my heart starts racing again. I told myself I wouldn't let people or things "get to me", and that has helped.)

08-17-2006, 09:03 PM
I have it, my sister has it, our mother had it. It definitely runs in families. Also, hypothyroidism and depression often go hand in hand...if you have hypothyroidism, you are more likely to be depressed....all hormone related. My doctor noticed what she thought was a prominent goiter in my neck and did thyroid function tests and found out I was hypothyroid. Just take the medication as prescribed and be sure to go back for checks however often your doctor recommends so they can keep you on the right dose.

Hyperthyroid = nervous, anxious, tendency to lose weight.

Hypothyroid = sluggish, no energy at all, weight gain.

Euthyroid = normal thyroid function....The goal with taking the medication.

I asked my doctor once...couldn't she keep me slightly on the hyper side so I would lose weight, but being hyperthyroid can damage your heart, so she said NO! If you are hyperthyroid, they treat you with radioactive iodine to knock out your thyroid function completely, then put you on Synthroid (or a comparable medication) to bring you back to normal thyroid function.

It's not a great condition to have inherited, and it is not curable, but it is treatable, and there are a lot worse ones to live with! :yessmiley

08-17-2006, 09:07 PM
Trish, my Doctor told me that many women want an over dose of thyroid medicine to keep their weight down but what they don't realize is that it really ages a person to do that! He said I wouldn't be happy in the long run if I did that and besides, he wouldn't allow it!

08-17-2006, 10:49 PM
I take levothyroxine. I had many symptoms but the worst were depression, being cold all the time and being VERY tired. I came home from work, laid right by the floor register to get warm and immediately went to sleep there...night after night.

08-18-2006, 01:27 AM
Hey, same brand I'm on...and same symptoms.

Renee Payton in Georgia
08-18-2006, 06:56 AM
I have hypothyroidism and take levothyroxine (the generic for Synthroid). I just have my blood tested once a year.

08-18-2006, 07:57 AM
Oh my, I never even heard of it.

08-19-2006, 12:57 AM
We never really knew our mother had hypothyroidism until my sister and I were diagnosed with it. Then, we realized she was also hypothyroid because she was always freezing cold and had extremely dry skin....another thing that can be caused by it....and I believe hair loss or thinning hair is another. As we get older, it's more and more important to know our family medical history.

08-19-2006, 10:08 AM
We think our Dad had Thyroid Disease because his hair turned grey in his early 20's. Mine turned grey as soon as I got Graves!

08-19-2006, 12:00 PM
What should your # be when you take medicine? Does anyone know? I always get confused because the higher the # the lower the thyroid. Is that right? I was totally grey at 40. My hair was all over the blue car interior.

08-19-2006, 01:11 PM
I don't know the answer to the # thing. I was totally grey at 40 too!

08-19-2006, 04:37 PM
There are normally 3 items that they check when checking for thyroid problems. TSH is the signal your brain puts out for the thyroid to make the hormones. T3 and T4 are the measurements they use for the thyroid gland production. So, normal for these (different for different ages possibly ) are around Free T4= .67-2.3, Total T3 - 40-260 and TSH .35-4.7. (give or take, this is for my 15 year old daughter.) For hypothyroidism, your T3 and T4 numbers will be under these generalized "normal" numbers I believe. For my daughter, who started out hyperthyroid, she began with a T4 of over 20, a T3 of over 800, and her TSH was not measureable, was less than .012. So, I am guessing that the hormones where there, but the brain signal was gone? I am NOT a doctor, or a medical person even, but have been really studying up on this since Casey came down with it. We have altered her diet, and she works out now, and feels so much better. At the moment, she is hypothyroid, but still so much better than last February. Thyroid problems can be easily handled, but you have to have routine bloodwork and you really need to educate yourself on diet, to help.

08-19-2006, 04:40 PM
You are right, Debbie, it does take a lot of thought and doing to stay on top of the thyroid disease but it is well worth the effort to do it because you feel so much better when everything is under control.

08-19-2006, 11:25 PM
I have a slow thyroid too. It happened when my mom was dying, I was so stressed and crying all the time. They say stess can bring it on, but it does run in families. Anyway, I was feeling so dizzy and fall-down tired. Now I've been on Synthroid for 7 years. At first, my thyroid kept changing quite frequently, but it has steadied out now and hasn't gotten any worse for a long time now. Sometimes I still feel the effects of the low thyroid, though, even though I take the medication all the time. I can loose weight if I really knock myself out with exercise, but only to a certain point. Like right now I am thin-ish, but I just can't ever seem to get back to the weight I always was before. Also I notice that it is very easy to be constipated. And by the time supper rolls round, I'm just about baked. I wear socks to bed too, because I get cold so easily and just FREEZE in the winter. Anyway, that's me!


08-19-2006, 11:44 PM
I do the freezing thing too, Angela! I must be the only lady in town that wears a sweater in the summer!

08-20-2006, 12:28 AM
I am not really sure what hyperthyroidism is, so i am probably not much help. My mom "Lost" her thyroid about 6 years ago, during her pregnancy with my brother. She had Kyle when she was 38, so it was a difficult pregnancy with her age. She is on some medicine that "replaces" her thyroid, but i am not sure what. Somehow this also effects her Bipolar, but i am not really sure, so they have to be careful with what medicine they choose, so that her bipolar medicine doesnt interfere with the thyroid medicine. She also had to take some medicine with Kyle to help with a particularly bad spell she was going through. They tried to choose medicines that wouldnt interfere with the pregnancy, but they think that the medicines she was on could have contributed to Kyle's brain problems (he is ADHD, and they are pretty sure he is Bipolar but cant officially diagnose him til he is 13). This of course breaks my mom's heart, because she feels like she caused him to have these problems that she has, that "Ruined" her childhood/teen years, because she was always depressed. But luckily with modern medicine, they are now able to help Kyle a lot! He is just like any other 6 year old boy besides the fact that he cant pay attention too well, and he has absoloutly no ability to think before he does. He is on Riddlein (sp?) right now, and it helps so much, that it makes him think so much before he acts that he is overly catious, so he is like the saftey police. LOL. They also think that the Bipolar medicine+the pregnancy, could have had something to do with my mom "losing" her thyroid.

Thanks for letting me share, i know it doesnt really help you, but it helps me to talk about my mom's condition, because it helps me understand that it is a disese, and not blame her so much for things that this disese has done to me through her.

Anyway, thanks, Sam.