Your thyroid symptoms may or may not be caused by problems with your thyroid, but you will never know without proper testing. You are definitely your own best advocate when it comes to your health!!!
Ask your doctor to do more comprehensive tests to have a better picture of what is really wrong. As it is, many doctors simply diagnose thyroid problems using just high or low TSH.
There are so many variations of problems that may be causing issues in the thyroid, hypothalamus, pituitary, and adrenals that proper testing must always be done. The dominant symptoms of HPA axis problems are manifested by the thyroid and adrenals.
Mainstream medicine doctors often react without much thought to what they perceive to be a low thyroid function by simply putting the patient on Synthroid…usually not the best idea. Synthroid is a synthetic molecule that is not close in shape or function to the natural thyroxine molecule for which it is supposed to be substituting.
Another problem I see is that mainstream doctors often only test for TSH (Thyroid Stimulating Hormone) and T4. Testing like this is like having two pieces of a puzzle that has 10 pieces and treating without enough information.
The minimum initial thyroid testing I want for a person includes the following:
- Total T4
- Free T4
- Free T3
- Reverse T3
- Anti TLG
- Anti TPO
It is also crucial for everyone to do an Adrenal Stress Panel by DiagnosTechs Inc. or Labrix, Inc. Again mainstream doctors often use a blood test because it is more convenient than a saliva test but due to the huge fluctuations in cortisol based upon the time of day, a 24-hour saliva test will provide the best information.
The Adrenal Stress Panel we recommend starting with, includes all of the following critical tests:
- Adrenal Stress Index
- TAP (Temporal Free Cortisol Rhythm (a.m., noon, afternoon, and midnight)
- DHEA and DHEA-S
- Insulin fasting and non-fasting
- 17-OH Progesterone
- Gluten (Gliadin) antibody SigA
- Total Salivary SigA.
If a person’s cortisol tests as very low then another test is needed, before any adrenal glandulars or hydrocortisone (cortisol) is implemented, to determine if the adrenals can even produce cortisol (Primary Adrenal Insufficiency), or if the pituitary is the source of the problem (Secondary Adrenal Insufficiency) and is unable to produce ACTH (Adrenocorticotropic Hormone) which is needed to
stimulate the adrenals to produce cortisol, DHEA and aldosterone.Keep in mind that after all the testing, it can look like you have plenty of cortisol and plenty of thyroid hormone and yet because of various problems one or both are not being utilized.
One of the best resources for understanding your lab tests, as well as treatment options, and online support is http://www.stopthethyroidmadness.com