The Thyroid Gland that regulates metabolism Located in the front of the neck just below the voice box larynx The thyroid gland releases two hormones thyroxine T4 and triioxdothyronine T3 The thyroid gland, as well as the pituitary gland and hypothalamus, control how much of these hormones are produced There are three types of hypothyroidism primary, secondary, and tertiary Due to a defect in the gland, the thyroid cannot make enough T3 and T4 The most common cause of primary hypothyroidism in the United States is the destruction of the thyroid gland by the immune system Hashimoto’s thyroiditis.
Other causes of primary hypothyroidism include certain drugs such as lithium radiation exposure to the neck radioactive iodine used for treatment of hyperthyroidism special xray dyes surgical removal of part or all of the thyroid gland some women develop after pregnancy postpartum thyroiditis In secondary hypothyroidism the thyroid gland produces too little hormone due to disorders of the pituitary gland i.e. pituitary hypothyroidism Tertiary hypothyroidism is caused by disorders of the hypothalamus Risk Factors Age older than 50 Female gender Obesity Thyroid surgery Xray or radiation treatments to the neck Early Symptoms Cold intolerance.
Constipation Depression Fatigue Weakness Muscle or joint pain Paleness Thin, brittle hair and fingernails Dry, itchy skin Weight gain and water retention Exams and Tests Physical examination may reveal Smaller than normal thyroid gland but sometimes may also be normal in size or enlarged Coarse facial features Firm swelling of arms and legs Loss of the edges of eyebrows Low blood pressure Slow heart rate Low temperature Pale, yellow, and dry skin Slow muscle relaxation when reflexes are tested Thin, brittle hair Chest xray may show enlarged heart More Exams and Tests.
Hypothyroidism Natural Treatment Options
Laboratory tests include High levels of thyroid stimulating hormone TSH indicate that the thyroid is not producing sufficient levels of thyroid hormone mainly T4. TSH does not diagnose secondary and tertiary hypothyroidism. Low free T3 and T4 Total T3 and T4 Anemia on a complete blood count Increased cholesterol levels Increased liver enzymes Increased serum prolactin Low serum sodium Treatment Treatment is to replace the thyroid hormone that is lacking T4 is used most often, but a combination of T4 and T3 is also used Receive the lowest dose that relieves symptoms and brings blood tests to a normal range.