It could possibly be you?
Have you ever gone to the doctor with the complaints of fatigue, weight gain, hair loss, or any other symptoms? And in your complaint, blood work was done? Sure, if you are like so many people, that is your experience.
However, the real issue is the way that the thyroid is tested. This could be your issue also. Over the next few minutes, I am going to explain how the thyroid works so that you can request the appropriate blood tests. Before we start, I want you to understand the blood tests - at least so you will recognize the test name.
The TSH is the gas pedal that motivates the thyroid to work. The pituitary gland produces a hormone called TSH (thyroid stimulating hormone) and it will increase when the thyroid gland is not producing enough hormone. The T4 is the inactive hormone and it the most abundant hormone produced by the thyroid. The T3 is the active hormone and it the hormone produced in a very small amounts by the thyroid.
The T4 is converted to T3 mainly by the liver. There are several things that can impair the conversion of T4 to T3 and if this occurs, the person may have all the signs and symptoms of a low thyroid but, initially, have normal laboratory tests when ordered by a conventional medical provider. However, it is important for the symptomatic patient to have T3, T4, and TSH checked and not just the TSH.
If a person has a high level of cortisol, a steroid hormone that battles inflammation, the thyroid conversion can be suppressed. Therefore, if the patient is not well, in general, it is possible that a simple TSH will not tell the entire story. Also, if you are deficient in zinc and selenium you will have thyroid dysfunction. These minerals are needed for the thyroid to convert T4 to T3. This is just one reason to take a pharmaceutical grade multivitamin.
A reverse T3 is very informative to the suspected thyroid dysfunction. If one does not convert normally from T4 to T3, then there may be a rise in a hormone called Reverse T3. This is an inactive hormone and it is the default hormone in those patients with abnormal conversion capabilities. This condition is called Reverse T3 Dominance Syndrome.
The most common condition of the thyroid is Hashimoto's Disease, or Thyroiditis, and is much more common in women. This is an autoimmune condition and it has been associated with gluten sensitivity.
If you are experiencing any of the complaints listed above ask your Dr to run a complete thyroid panel(not just a TSH!). My office also offers discounted labs and can order these tests and interpret them for you as well.