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What should my next step be with my thyroid issue?

By December 17, 2008 - 9:39am
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When I got my thyroid tested a couple of months ago, my TSH levels were at 3.67. When I went to my naturopath, she said that I had a borderline thyroid problem. However, I came across this release from the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists yesterday that said that "Now AACE encourages doctors to consider treatment for patients who test outside the boundaries of a narrower margin based on a target TSH level of 0.3 to 3.04."(see complete link here: http://www.aace.com/newsroom/press/2003/index.php?r=20030118 This information was actually released in January 2003.

So, according to the AACE, my thyroid level is too high. I am finishing my detox in a couple of weeks and getting my thyroid retested after that. I am wondering what the next step should be if my levels are still high......Go to a traditional endocrinologist? My whole reason for going to a naturopath was because I didn't want to go on synthroid, but I am also concerned about this finding.

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EmpowHER Guest

Check out the range mentioned in this release: http://www.aace.com/newsroom/press/2003/index.php?r=20030118 .33 Looks to be at the bottom of the range, so decreasing armour sounds right to me.

July 31, 2009 - 2:12pm
EmpowHER Guest

my thyroid test was .33 so the dr decreased my armour to 15 mg I was on 30 does that sound right

July 31, 2009 - 1:10pm
EmpowHER Guest

Most labs are using (0.8-2.0) Free T4 range and (2.3-4.2). Free T3 range having these normal but elevated TSH points to sub clinical hypothyroidism
The higher amounts of fluoride and chloride compounds [such as perchlorate, sometimes present in drinking water], are able to impair thyroid function by displacing dietary iodine [these all sub-group of halogens, with fluorine having highest activity, and iodine the least active]. As a result, the people are becoming ‘iodine deficient’, even if they are getting enough iodine in their diet.
Such people show DECREASED radioactive iodine uptake test with moderate thyroid enlargement often present.
The summary of most recent article about soy consumption, shows that :
“in individuals with compromised thyroid function and/or whose iodine intake is marginal soy foods may increase risk of developing clinical hypothyroidism. Therefore, it is important for soy food consumers to make sure their intake of iodine is adequate.” [PMID: 16571087 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
‘Effects of soy protein and soybean isoflavones on thyroid function in healthy adults and hypothyroid patients: a review of the relevant literature’.
By Messina M, Redmond G. Department of Nutrition, School of Public Health, Loma Linda University, California, USA. markm@olympus.net.
Unless diffuse or nodular changes in thyroid are present, it can return to normal function in most cases, after number or amount of ‘inhibiting factors’ are reduced.
For your particular case two next diagnostic steps can be recommended:
-the RAI scan to determine ability of thyroid to take up iodine;
- the ultrasound of the thyroid to check its structure.
This would eliminate most of irrelevant “educated guesses” and would help to develop best treatment strategy [or would add more questions to research and answer].
Sorry for long boring reply. Best of luck!!

December 22, 2008 - 2:21pm

Thanks for the great additional info. I used to eat soy products all the time, but after learning about more about soy I have stopped (about 6 months ago). I didn't know about the fluoridated toothpaste issue, though. Interesting. What is it about the fluoride that does that? Also, I did have my T3 and T4 levels tested. I was told they were normal -- what do you consider to be normal for these levels?

December 22, 2008 - 12:22pm
EmpowHER Guest

Postpartum thyroiditis means inflammation of the thyroid following pregnancy, ). It occurs in the first six months after delivery in about 5% to 9% of women. Typical symptoms relate to an initial phase of hyperthyroidism (with symptoms of rapid heart rate, increased sweating, nervousness) and a later phase of hypothyroidism (with fatigue, dry skin, feeling cold, depression).

Studies have shown that 80% to 90% or more of affected women had detectable levels before or during their pregnancies of antibodies directed against the thyroid gland.

In up to 5% of women, this can cause inflammation of the thyroid up to 12 months after the delivery.

Roughly 20% to 33% of the women who develop postpartum thyroiditis will have permanent hypothyroidism.

Almost one-third of women with hypothyroidism due to postpartum thyroiditis develop mild to moderate depression after pregnancy

December 20, 2008 - 7:57am
EmpowHER Guest

The absence of antibodies means that with 95% probability you do not have autoimmune thyroid disease.
Again measuring freeT4 and freeT3 levels can help to pinpoint the cause of elevated TSH.
The wild guess, it can be because of postpartum thyroiditis, that is often asymptomatic.
In such cases avoiding excessive eating of soy product , and using low-fluoridate tooth paste can minimize effect of thyroid function "inhibitors" to some degree and improve level of T4.
As 85% of T3 is produced outside of the thyroid, anything that inhibits T4 to T3 conversion should be investigated

December 20, 2008 - 7:47am

Hi Anonymous -- Thanks for the info. Actually, I just got that test done & I was fine... no Hashimotos (whew) Thanks for posting this, though. It is good info.

December 19, 2008 - 2:52pm
EmpowHER Guest

To Joanna:
My suggestion is to have blood tested for TPO/TG antibodies which may indicate autoimmune thyroid condition [Hashimoto's thyroiditis]
Some patients [about 30 %] were able to reduce the antibodies' level by taking selenium supplements [dose varied for different trials; was between 65 and 150 microgram per day];reducing levels of antibodies slowed down destruction of the thyroid.
Increase of iodine in the diet is NOT recommended if autoimmune condition is confirmed.

December 19, 2008 - 1:45pm

Joanna, you might find this blog really interesting. It is written by a thyroid doctor who blogs about issues his patients are dealing with, and how he is treating them. I think the eighth blog down talks about

The doctor is Dr. Richard B. Guttler in Santa Monica, California. He has been a thyroid expert for 31 years and directs a thyroid center that does all aspects of thyroid diagnosis and treatment.

Many of his blogs will not pertain to you, but he often discusses hormones and prescriptions, and it's interesting to read all the issues patients are dealing with:


And here is his website:


That page has a lot of links at the bottom that might take you to other sites where Synthroid, current levels of thyroid measurement, or thyroid treatment in general is discussed. Just a little light reading while you're waiting for the results of your tests, LOL. In all seriousness, here's a wish that your results are so good that no further treatment will be necessary.

December 18, 2008 - 9:53am

Hi Virginia -- This looks like a great book. I was just about to place an Amazon order, so it looks like I have one more book to add to the list! I see he has also written for EmpowHer, which is great. Also, I checked out his web site, www.thyroidwellness.com, which was very interesting. I loved reading the testimonials and was interesting to see the supplements he offered that are designed especially to help people with thyroid issues. Thanks so much!!!!!!

December 18, 2008 - 9:32am
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