I went to the doctor last week for my annual exam. My wonderful doctor, yes I really do like him, if anyone is looking for a good OBGYN just ask, anyways . . . my wonderful doctor said everything is fine and he just wanted to do a blood draw and check out somethings. Well I got the phone call today on my results. Everything is fine, (my cholesterol went down from last year, still a little high but nothing to get worked up about), but my thyroid level came back low! He has put me on a medication that I now have to take for two months. Right before it is gone I will have to go back to the office and get my level rechecked. I really hope this helps and explain a lot of things that is going on with me. After I got the news I went and pick up my medication. Which is a good thing because it is suppose to be taken first thing in the morning before I eat anything. After I picked the med I look up hypothyroidism. This is what I found.
When the production of thyroid hormone decreases below the normal body's need, the condition is referred to as hypothyroidism. Without enough thyroid hormone, the body becomes tired and run down. Every organ system slows—the brain slows down making it difficult to concentrate, the gut slows down causing constipation, and metabolism slows down causing weight gain. Although there are many different causes of an underactive thyroid gland, the resulting effect on the body is the same.
The most common cause of hypothyroidism in the United States is chronic autoimmune thyroiditis (Hashimoto's thyroiditis), a condition characterized by inflammation and damage to the thyroid tissue. Damage occurs because immune cells which usually fight off infection and colds, attack the body's own thyroid tissue instead.
there are a couple listed but this is what stands out to me:
Thyroiditis is especially common in the post partum period (it is also sometimes confused with postpartum depression) and may require thyroid hormone adjustments. It is also important to note that hypothyroidism (and hyperthyroidism) can sometimes cause unexplained infertility or miscarriages particularly early in pregnancy. Therefore, thyroid function tests are often a routine part of evaluating a patient who may have problems with pregnancy. In addition, during pregnancy, the requirements for thyroid hormone may increase, and should be monitored closely in the first and second trimester. Although some forms of thyroid disease may actually improve during pregnancy, pregnancy is also often associated with the development of benign thyroid disease.
The symptoms of hypothyroidism are mainly dependent on the amount of decrease in thyroid hormone and duration of time that the decrease has been present. For most patients, the symptoms are mild and can often be confused with other problems. The symptoms may include the following:
- high cholesterol
fatigue and muscle swelling or cramps (mainly in the arms and legs)
tingling in the fingers
loss of equilibrium
dry skin and cold intolerance
coarseness or loss of hair
goiter (enlarged thyroid causing a lump in the neck)
memory and mental impairment
irregular or heavy menstruation
infertility or miscarriages
slowed heart rate
myxedema: fluid infiltration of the tissues causing puffiness (mainly in the face)
Treatment and Management
Since hypothyroid patients are deficient in thyroid hormone, they are treated with hormone replacement drugs such as levothyroxine (that is what I am taking). Although thyroid hormone drugs produce no allergic reactions or side-effects, their effectiveness may be decreased by patient age or by interactions with other drugs. Therefore, it is important that the physician is informed about any other medications the patient may be taking.
Once blood tests confirm that the patient is on the correct dose of medication, the frequency of office visits can be reduced. A follow-up in 6 months and then annually is a common schedule. During follow-up visits, an appropriate interim history and physical examination is performed along with appropriate tests.
I am glad to know that is something worng with me and it is not all in my head. Now I just have to take one pill a day and hopefully that make me feel better!