Hashimoto’s thyroiditis

By Uncategorized

Hashimoto’s disease also called Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, is an autoimmune medical condition where the immune system turns against the body. In the case of Hashimoto’s, the immune system goes after the thyroid, leading to inflammation and interfering with its ability to produce thyroid hormones. Hashimoto’s oftentimes results in hypothyroidism (reduced thyroid function).

What Is Hypothyroidism?

A condition called hypothyroidism occurs when the thyroid doesn’t produce enough hormones that the body needs. The thyroid gland is located at the front of the neck. It makes hormones that control the body’s metabolism. These hormones affect heart rate and how fast the body uses calories from food.

What Causes Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis?

The factors thought to contribute to Hashimoto’s thyroiditis include:

Genetics: People with Hashimoto’s often have relatives with thyroid conditions or other autoimmune disorders.

Hormones: Hashimoto’s is diagnosed in about seven times as many females as males, in both Tampa and across the United States. Due to this large difference, sex hormones are thought to play a role.

Too much iodine: Iodine is needed by the body to make thyroid hormones. A diet too rich in iodine may lead to thyroid disease.

 

What Are the Symptoms of Hashimoto’s?

Not everyone with Hashimoto’s disease develops hypothyroidism. For those who do, mild hypothyroidism without symptoms can occur, especially in the early stages. When hypothyroidism starts to show, the first symptom may be an enlarged thyroid called a goiter. Other symptoms of an underactive thyroid due to Hashimoto’s could include:

  • Weight gain
  • Fatigue
  • Depression
  • Memory problems
  • Muscle weakness
  • Constipation
  • Inability to get warm
  • Joint and muscle pain
  • Hair loss, thinning hair or brittle hair
  • Irregular or heavy menstrual periods
  • Difficulty getting pregnant
  • Slowed heart rate

What Treatment Options Are There for Hashimoto’s?

Since Hashimoto’s thyroiditis typically results in hypothyroidism (an underactive thyroid gland), thyroid hormone replacement therapy helps to restore the balance of hormones the body needs. Thyroid hormone replacement therapy helps to relieve a goiter condition as well as other symptoms.

Find Out If You Have Hashimoto’s

Since the symptoms of Hashimoto’s thyroid can mimic other medical conditions, it’s important to see an endocrinologist for an accurate diagnosis.

Pregnancy & Thyroid Conditions

By Endocrinology

Pregnancy is a wonderful and very exciting time in a woman’s life. Certainly, the mother to be looks forward to the birth of her child. A lot of planning is involved along with concern about the health of the child. This is also a time for the mother to really pay attention to her own health. Did you know that a large number of pregnant women were found to have under-active thyroids? Certainly, an under-active thyroid might affect the unborn child. A concerned mother’s first thought is treating the thyroid condition or consulting with an endocrinologist for more information.

The Thyroid

The thyroid is a small gland in the front of the neck. Its main function is to supply thyroid hormones to the organs in the body. Thyroid hormones directly affect important functions in the body. For example, the metabolism or the way that the body burns fat. If your body is producing too much thyroid hormones, you might feel jittery, nervous, or warm. If your body is not producing enough hormones, you might feel cold or tired.

Low Thyroids And Pregnant Women

Formerly, reports suggested that a pregnant woman with a low thyroid condition might give birth to a baby with impaired brain development or even miscarry the child. Of course, this was a cause for great alarm in those women suffering from this health condition. However, recent health reports state that hypothyroidism during pregnancy does not pose a threat to the unborn child. Still, some women might have questions about this condition and should discuss it further with an endocrinologist in Tampa.

Testing Pregnant Women

There are two trains of thought on testing pregnant women with low thyroid conditions. The old established idea was to treat the condition, while the mother was still pregnant. Thus, dramatically reducing the chances of any birth complications or abnormalities. However, the new train of thought is that treating a pregnant woman for this condition might cause more harm than good. Still, it is important to take this on a case by case basis and leave it up to the discretion of the doctor treating the woman.

Understanding Thyroid Disorders

By Endocrinology

The thyroid gland is small compared to many other organs, but it has a big role when it comes to keeping you active and healthy. A member of the endocrine system, the thyroid produces hormones that regulate the functioning of the body, and a malfunctioning of the organ can cause a number of ailments. An endocrinologist in Tampa is an expert at recognizing and treating thyroid disorders.

Understanding the Thyroid Gland

Shaped like a butterfly, the thyroid is located in your neck below the voice box. The gland produces hormones that, among other things, control breathing and heart rates, regulate cholesterol levels and exert control overweight and muscle development. The thyroid is itself activated by hormones produced elsewhere in your body, allowing it to produce its own hormones.

Thyroid Gland Disorders

Nearly 30 million Americans are believed to experience thyroid disorders every year, although only about half of those affected are properly diagnosed. Hypothyroidism involves insufficient hormone production, which can lead to such health problems as excessive fatigue, depression, and obesity. Excessive hormone production, known as hyperthyroidism, can result in such conditions as anxiety, mood disorders, and even hair loss. A goiter is an enlargement of the gland itself, which can hamper breathing and swallowing. The thyroid can also be affected by nodules, which are often benign but can occasionally be cancerous.

Diagnosing and Treating Thyroid Disorders

A variety of methods are available in detecting thyroid abnormalities, but it will usually take a combination of two different tests to make an accurate diagnosis. Such diagnoses may involve laboratory tests, biopsies or the use of ultrasound equipment. Thyroid disorders are often treated with hormones, although diet and lifestyle changes may in some cases be sufficient.

Seeking Help from a Tampa Endocrinologist

Using the latest technology, Tampa endocrinologists have the ability to diagnose thyroid conditions and recommend the best course of action for each case. The doctors will accomplish this while providing their patients with care that is both professional and personalized. If you suspect a thyroid problem, learn more about the services available from Tampa endocrinologists by visiting www.thyroiddoctortampa.com.

Signs of Hypothyroidism

By Endocrinology

The thyroid glad plays a vital role in regulating human metabolism, which is the rate that the body converts food and oxygen into energy. As people age, the rate at which the thyroid secretes hormones into the bloodstream slows. Although this process is natural, in some individuals it slows too much, causing a condition called hypothyroidism, or slow thyroid.

Who is Affected by Hypothyroidism?

Many people don’t even realize that they have hypothyroidism as this condition can creep up on you. The condition is more common in women than men, with about 13 percent of women between the ages of 35 and 65 afflicted with it and more than 20% of women aged 65 or older.

Symptoms

Unexplained weight gain is the most common symptom of those afflicted by a slow thyroid. True hypothyroidism has several other defining characteristics that include:

  • Fatigue and less overall energy
  • Intolerance to cold
  • Loss of appetitie
  • Cardiovascular problems, such as high blood pressure, elevated levels of cholesterol and increased homocysteine
  • Depression and memory problems
  • Dry, flaky skin and brittle nails
  • Constipation
  • Muscle aches and pain around the joints

Diagnosis

If you have any of these symptoms, it’s wise to consult a Tampa area endoncrinologist as many of these signs may also be present in other diseases and conditions. In addition to a physical exam, your doctor will check for other signs, such as an enlarged thyroid gland and may order tests to determine levels of thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH). This is the best screening test to determine if you have hypothyrodism and long checking for levels of T4, the thyroid hormone thyroxine.

Treatment

Once you have been diagnosed with a slow thyroid, most treatments are simple. The condition is usually treated via daily doses of synthetic T4, also known as levothyroxine sodium. The goal of the treatment is to lower TSH to the midpoint of normal and maintain it at that level. Once the proper levels are established, your levels will be checked about every six months.

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