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How Do You Know You Have Thyroid Problems

Are There Different Types Of Thyroid Removal Surgery

How Do You Know If You Have a Thyroid Problem?

If your healthcare provider determines that your thyroid needs to be removed, there are a couple of ways that can be done. Your thyroid may need to be completely removed or just partially. This will depend on the severity of your condition. Also, if your thyroid is very big or has a lot of growths on it, that could prevent you from being eligible for some types of surgery.

The surgery to remove your thyroid is called a thyroidectomy. There are two main ways this surgery can be done:

  • With an incision on the front of your neck.
  • With an incision in your armpit.

The incision on the front of your neck is more of the traditional version of a thyroidectomy. It allows your surgeon to go straight in and remove the thyroid. In many cases, this might be your best option. You may need this approach if your thyroid is particularly big or has a lot of larger nodules.

Alternatively, there is a version of the thyroid removal surgery where your surgeon makes an incision in your armpit and then creates a tunnel to your thyroid. This tunnel is made with a special tool called an elevated retractor. It creates an opening that connects the incision in your armpit with your neck. The surgeon will use a robotic arm that will move through the tunnel to get to the thyroid. Once there, it can remove the thyroid back through the tunnel and out of the incision in your armpit.

  • Are not at a healthy body weight.
  • Have large thyroid nodules.
  • Have a condition like thyroiditis or Gravess disease.

What About Thyroid Cancer

Thyroid cancer is uncommon and is among the least deadly. The main symptom is a lump or swelling in the neck, and only about 5% of thyroid nodules turn out to be cancerous. When thyroid cancer is diagnosed, it is most often treated with surgery followed by radioactive iodine therapy or, in some cases, external radiation therapy.

Your Thyroid Does Change As You Age

As with any organ, your thyroid may start to function differently as you get older.

Thyroid dysfunction generally occurs in either early adulthood or between the ages of 40 to 50, Lee said. As we get into our 70s, TSH naturally increases, meaning that your thyroid hormone levels may shift to be a little lower. This seems to happen to protect our bodies as we age, with less stress on our heart and metabolic system.

This is important to note, Lee said, because it gives physicians a greater threshold to treat someone who is older who may have higher TSH levels. Alternatively, low TSH levels can be more harmful the older we get.

This isnt to say that if youre young, you dont need to think about your thyroid at all. Thyroid disorders can happen at many different ages, as can lumps.

We do know that the younger population, those in their 20s, 30s and 40s, can develop thyroid nodules, Rao said. The vast majority of these nodules, especially if theyre below one centimeter, are 95% of the time completely benign. But its still important to be aware that they are there, and periodically monitor them.

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How To Know If You Have A Thyroid Problem 7 Major Signs

How to know if you have a thyroid problem if no vivid signs are present on your body? There are 7 major signs that you can notice, so find out all about them on time!

The thyroid is a gland that intervenes in various metabolic processes, therefore, any deficit generates alterations. We tell you about the disorders it causes.

Thyroid diseases have a wide range of symptoms and associated disorders that usually have a serious impact on the quality of life of the patient, to a greater degree, women.

Fortunately, there are treatments for most. However, it must be said that these are usually quite long and even for life. On the other hand, it is possible that at some point patients require some surgical intervention to improve their quality of life.

Likewise, the thyroid gland regulates infinite metabolic processes and any deficiency or excess of the thyroid generates alterations that can be confused with other diseases. For example, tiredness or sudden weight gain. How to know if you have a thyroid problem, then?

Lets see below what the disorders are associated with thyroid diseases to understand the importance of paying attention to certain signs and discussing them with the doctor during the check-up.

What Are The Different Types Of Thyroid Disease

How to Know If You Have a Thyroid Problem  7 Major Signs

Thyroid disease is classified into four categories:

  • Hypothyroidism
  • Hyperthyroidism
  • Hashimotos
  • Graves disease

Although men experience thyroid disease, women are five to eight times more likely to develop problems. Its not a disease just for seniors, either. Women can develop problems during puberty, pregnancy, postpartum, and perimenopause especially due to hormonal shifts.

Cancer of the thyroid is less common. When caught early, however, it is treatable and survival rates are high. There are less than 200,000 cases in the United States each year. The cause of thyroid cancer is not clear, but as with most cancers today, it thought that it might involve a combination of genetic and environmental factors.

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Signs Your Thyroid Is Underactive

Your thyroida small gland in your neckhas a huge impact on your body. It produces thyroid hormone , which is responsible for keeping your metabolism, heartbeat, temperature, mood, and more, in check. An underactive thyroid doesn’t produce enough TH, and that can cause a host of health problems. Watch the video for the warning signs.

Your thyroida small gland in your neckhas a huge impact on your body. It produces thyroid hormone , which is responsible for keeping your metabolism, heartbeat, temperature, mood, and more, in check. An underactive thyroid doesn’t produce enough TH, and that can cause a host of health problems. Watch the video for the warning signs.

Don’t have time to watch? Read the full transcript:

You’re exhausted: Too little thyroid hormone makes you feel fatigued.

You’ve gained weight: An underactive thyroid slows your metabolism.

Your skin is dry and itchy: Hair and nails might be brittle, too.

You’re feeling down: Thyroid hormones can affect brain chemistry and mood.

You’ve got brain fog: A sluggish thyroid can make you forgetful and fuzzy-headed.

You’re all backed up: Digestion slows down, making you constipated.

Your flow is like whoa: Say hello to longer, heavier periods with more cramps.

You’re constantly cold: Total system slowdown = less energy burned. That means less body heat.

Think you have a thyroid problem? See your doc and ask to get tested.

The Role Of Your Thyroid

First, its good to know what your thyroid does in the body. The thyroid is a butterfly-shaped gland right near the larynx that produces hormones, said Naresh Rao, a board-certified family medicine physician, partner at Sports Medicine at Chelsea and founder of Max Sports Health in New York City.

The thyroids main function is to produce triiodothyronine and thyroxine , which help regulate almost all bodily functions, including your weight, metabolism, energy levels and body temperature, as well as how your skin, hair and nails grow.

Theres also something called the thyroid-stimulating hormone, which is produced by the pituitary gland and tells your thyroid to make more T3 and T4. There are tests to check your TSH, T3 and T4 levels, all of which can tell doctors if you have a thyroid problem.

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Weakness And Aches In Muscles And Joints

Low thyroid hormone flips the metabolic switch toward catabolism, which is when the body breaks down body tissues like muscle for energy .

During catabolism, muscle strength decreases, potentially leading to feelings of weakness. The process of breaking down muscle tissue can also lead to aching .

Everyone feels weak once in a while. However, people with hypothyroidism are twice as likely to feel more weak than usual, compared to healthy people (

6 ).

One study in 35 individuals with hypothyroidism showed that replacing low levels of thyroid hormone with a synthetic thyroid hormone called levothyroxine improved muscle strength and decreased aches and pains, compared to no treatment .

Another study showed a 25% improvement in the sense of physical well-being among patients receiving thyroid replacement .

Weakness and aches are normal following strenuous activity. However, new, and especially increasing, weakness or aching is a good reason to make an appointment with your physician.

Summary: Low levels of thyroid hormone slow down your metabolism and can cause painful muscle breakdown.

Sensitive Skin And Skin Discoloration

Thyroid Problems- How Do You Know If You Have A Thyroid Problem?

Thyroid hormones also influence the quality of your skin in a variety of ways. With hyperthyroidism, you may notice itchy and dry patches of skin.

Your face may feel softer and swollen. You may even notice swelling around your fingertips. Other symptoms include darkening of the skin, rashes, lumps, and reddish spots.

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What Common Symptoms Can Happen With Thyroid Disease

There are a variety of symptoms you could experience if you have a thyroid disease. Unfortunately, symptoms of a thyroid condition are often very similar to the signs of other medical conditions and stages of life. This can make it difficult to know if your symptoms are related to a thyroid issue or something else entirely.

For the most part, the symptoms of thyroid disease can be divided into two groups those related to having too much thyroid hormone and those related to having too little thyroid hormone .

Symptoms of an overactive thyroid can include:

  • Experiencing anxiety, irritability and nervousness.
  • Having trouble sleeping.
  • Experiencing an intolerance to cold temperatures.

Common Signs Of Thyroid Disease In Children

The thyroid gland which is located at the front of the neck near the clavicles is responsible for the rate of all metabolic and chemical processes in our body, in every cell, tissue and organ. Thyroid gland disorders consequently have a profound effect upon the human body. When the thyroid gland produces too much thyroid hormone , the condition is called hyperthyroidism. When the thyroid gland produces too little thyroid hormone , the condition is called hypothyroidism. Thyroid problems can occur at any age infants can even be born with a thyroid problem!According to the American Diabetes Association and the Pediatric Endocrine Society, parents should look for the following symptoms that may indicate problems with their childs thyroid.

Signs of hyperthyroidism can include:

  • Feeling jumpy including trembling hands and trouble concentrating
  • Fast heartbeat
  • Big appetite along with weight loss
  • Wide eyed stare including possible eyes bulging out
  • Other problems can include fainting and looser stool
  • The most common cause of hyperthyroidism in children and adolescents is an autoimmune condition called Graves disease which causes the body to produce antibodies that stimulate the thyroid gland uncontrollably, making too much thyroid hormone.

    Signs of hypothyroidism can include:

  • Weight gain without increased appetite
  • Constipation or harder stool less often
  • Other problems can include brittle hair and dry skin
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    Surgery For Thyroid Disorders

    Removing the thyroid gland can cure hyperthyroidism, but the procedure is only recommended if antithyroid drugs don’t work, or if there is a large goiter. Surgery may also be recommended for patients with thyroid nodules. Once the thyroid is removed, most patients require daily supplements of thyroid hormones to avoid developing hypothyroidism.

    Could You Have A Thyroid Problem

    Could it be My Thyroid?

    The symptoms of a mildly overactive or underactive thyroid aren’t always obvious. Learn when you need to get tested.

    You’re feeling tired and having trouble concentrating. You’ve been losingor gainingweight without trying. Are these just signs that you’re getting older, or could you have a thyroid problem?

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    • Research health conditions
    • Prepare for a doctor’s visit or test
    • Find the best treatments and procedures for you
    • Explore options for better nutrition and exercise

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    What Is Your Thyroid And What Does It Do

    Located at the base of the neck, our thyroid is small yet powerful. It may be light like a butterfly, weighing approximately 20 grams, but shouldnt be taken lightly. It is responsible for our metabolism. It regulates all body functions including the heart rate, respiration, body temperature, and other organs. It ensures that all systems are a go.

    Causes: Pituitary Gland Problems

    Thyroid disease may begin in the pituitary gland. The pituitary is located at the base of your brain. It controls the functions of many other glands in the body, including the thyroid. This gland produces TSH, which signals the thyroid gland to make thyroid hormones.

    If there is a problem with your pituitary and not enough TSH is produced, thyroid problems can result. Inflammation of the thyroid and taking certain medications can also cause low thyroid hormone levels.

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    What Are The Signs And Symptoms Of Hypothyroidism

    Symptoms of hypothyroidism develop slowly, often over several years. At first, you may feel tired and sluggish. Later, you may develop other signs and symptoms of a slowed-down metabolism, including:

    • Feeling cold when other people do not
    • Constipation
    • A hoarse voice
    • More than usual menstrual bleeding

    You also may have high LDL or “bad” cholesterol, which can raise your risk for .

    Tsh Thyroid Stimulating Hormone

    How to know if you have a thyroid problem

    TSH is the hormone that tells your thyroid to make more thyroid hormone. Heres how it works.

    Your hypothalamus is like the thermostat for thyroid hormone it keeps watch on how much thyroid hormone is in your bloodstream, and it responds when you need more. When your level drops too low, it releases TRH, thyroid releasing hormone. Your pituitary gland picks up on TRH, and it releases TSH in response.

    Does it test thyroid function? Well, yes, but only if your hypothalamus and pituitary are doing their thing. The stops on the signaling pathway can get messed up for various reasons. Any problems with detecting hormone or releasing hormone at any point in the cascade, and the TSH test becomes worthless.

    TSH Optimal range: 0.5-2 IU/L

    High TSHHigh TSH indicates youre hypothyroid. Since its a signaling hormone, high TSH indicates that your body detects low hormone, so its turning up the volume on the signal to make more. If your thyroid isnt or cannot respond because its compromised in some way, youll produce more and more TSH. This number can really go off the charts, depending on how low you are and how long youve been hypothyroid.

    Low TSHLow TSH tells you that you have too much thyroid hormone, or that you can cut your dose of thyroid medication, so it indicates hyperthyroid. Certain thyroid medications can suppress your TSH, so if you dont have symptoms youre still in good shape.

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    What Should You Do If You Think You Have Signs And Symptoms Of A Thyroid Disorder Which Type Of Doctors Treat Thyroid Problems

    • Thyroid disease is a broad spectrum of disorders that may or may not lead to enlargement of the thyroid gland itself or the presence of lumps or nodules.
    • Signs and symptoms of thyroid disease are apparent when the gland is over- or under-producing thyroid hormone.
    • It is important to remember that none of these symptoms described in this article is specific for thyroid disease.
    • A number of different conditions and normal states may cause all of them.
    • Your doctor or endocrinologist can order laboratory tests to evaluate the function of your thyroid gland if you have troubling symptoms.

    Should People With Thyroid Problems Avoid These Foods

    Soy: If you have hypothyroidism, yes. Eating too much soy causes problems only for those with hypothyroidism, which occurs when your thyroid gland does not make enough thyroid hormones, Dr. Nasr says.

    The main problem is that soy may hinder absorption of the hormones that such patients take.

    Some studies show that if you eat a lot of soy, or drink a big glass of soy milk, within one hour of taking a thyroid hormone, it might affect absorption, Dr. Nasr says. Many individuals depend on a consistent absorption of those hormones to achieve a steady state.

    Generally, expertsrecommend that people who have a borderline thyroid one thats a littleunderactive but youre still trying to preserve thyroid function do not toconsume large amounts of soy every day, he adds.

    Turnips and rootvegetables: No. These vegetables aresometimes thought to cause thyroid problems, but thats not the case, Dr. Nasrsays. They are good for your diet, regardless of any thyroid issues.

    One root vegetable that is the exception is cassava, a common staple in certain parts of Africa. This plant is known to produce toxins that can slow an already underactive thyroid, especially in the presence of an iodine deficiency, Dr. Nasr says. But thats not relevant here in the United States, unless you cook cassava and you eat it every day.

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    Weak Nails And Thinning Hair

    Your hair and nails are constantly growing. One important function of the thyroid gland is sending hormone signals to trigger hair and nail growth. With hyperthyroidism, the extra hormones tell your body to increase the growth of your hair follicles and nails in a shorter period of time. While it would seem that your nails growing fast would be a positive side effect of thyroid dysfunction, that isnt the case. This forced growth is too fast. As a result, your body has to stretch its natural resources, which can lead to thin and brittle hair and nails.

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