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Why Do You Need Your Thyroid

Hashimoto’s Disease And Hypothyroidism

What Thyroid Tests Do You Need To Get?

The most common cause of hypothyroidism is Hashimoto’s disease. It’s an autoimmune disorder, meaning that the body’s own immune system attacks the thyroid and causes inflammation. This prevents the thyroid from making enough hormones, causing hypothyroidism.

Hashimoto’s disease often runs in families, and it affects women more than men. People with other autoimmune diseases are also more likely to get Hashimoto’s disease.

What Your Ultrasound Results Mean

While you have the test, your ultrasound technician may talk to you about what they see during the exam. However, only your doctor will be able to confirm and diagnose any findings from the test. Here are some of the terms you may hear in your results:


A thyroid gland is about the size of a small plum and has two lobes: left and right. Your ultrasound results will indicate which lobe has abnormalities.


A thyroid nodule is an abnormal clump or growth of cells that creates a lump on the gland. Most are benign, which means they are noncancerous. Your radiologist may discuss the following characteristics to describe your nodules:

  • Shape


    Some people have small calcium deposits in thyroid nodules. They tend to show up as bright spots on ultrasound. These calcium deposits can sometimes indicate papillary thyroid cancer, which is the most common type of thyroid cancer. You may see the term Ć¢echogenic fociĆ¢ about microcalcifications.

    Do not panic if your doctor orders a thyroid ultrasound. Thyroid cancer is less common than other cancers, and remember, most nodules are benign! Furthermore, an enlarged thyroid gland is often a sign of hypo- or hyperthyroidism instead of a tumor. While a diagnosis of any cancer is devastating, thyroid cancer treatment is quite successful.

    What Will Happen During A Partial Thyroidectomy

    • General anesthesia is usually given before a partial thyroidectomy. This medicine will keep you asleep and free from pain during surgery. You may instead be given local anesthesia to numb the area. You may feel some pressure during surgery, but you should not feel any pain.
    • After one or more incisions are made, your surgeon will remove part of your thyroid gland. If you have cancer, your surgeon may also remove the tissue and lymph nodes around your thyroid gland. If you are awake during surgery, you may be asked to speak to your healthcare providers.
    • One or more drains may be placed into your incision to remove extra fluids from the surgery area. Your incision will be closed with stitches or surgical glue and covered with a bandage.

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    Reason #: Youre Tired All The Time

    A condition called hypothyroidism may be responsible for your fatigue and sluggishness. Hypothyroidism occurs when you have too little thyroid hormone in your system. Without adequate amounts of thyroid hormone in your bloodstream and cells, your muscles are also weak and it takes all your energy to perform basic functions.

    What Causes Thyroid Disease

    Why You Need To Speak Up For Your Thyroid

    The two main types of thyroid disease are hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism. Both conditions can be caused by other diseases that impact the way the thyroid gland works.

    Conditions that can cause hypothyroidism include:

    • Thyroiditis: This condition is an inflammation of the thyroid gland. Thyroiditis can lower the amount of hormones your thyroid produces.
    • Hashimotos thyroiditis: A painless disease, Hashimotos thyroiditis is an autoimmune condition where the bodys cells attack and damage the thyroid. This is an inherited condition.
    • Postpartum thyroiditis: This condition occurs in 5% to 9% of women after childbirth. Its usually a temporary condition.
    • Iodine deficiency: Iodine is used by the thyroid to produce hormones. An iodine deficiency is an issue that affects several million people around the world..
    • A non-functioning thyroid gland: Sometimes, the thyroid gland doesnt work correctly from birth. This affects about 1 in 4,000 newborns. If left untreated, the child could have both physical and mental issues in the future. All newborns are given a screening blood test in the hospital to check their thyroid function.

    Conditions that can cause hyperthyroidism include:

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    What Will Be My Physical Restrictions Following Surgery

    Most surgeons prefer that patients limit extreme physical activities following surgery for a few days or weeks. This is primarily to reduce the risk of a postoperative neck hematoma and breaking of stitches in the wound closure. These limitations are brief, usually followed by a quick transition back to unrestricted activity. Normal activity can begin on the first postoperative day. Vigorous sports, such as swimming, and activities that include heavy lifting should be delayed for at least ten days to 2 weeks.

    A Special Caution For Women

    Pregnant women or women who want to become pregnant in the next 6 months should not use radioactive iodine, as the treatment can destroy the fetus’s thyroid and impair its development. In fact, women should wait a year before conceiving if they have been treated with the therapy. Women who are breast-feeding should also not use radioactive iodine.

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    What Should I Expect After A Partial Thyroidectomy

    Tell your healthcare providers if you have difficulty breathing or swallowing. Tell them if your bandage feels like it is getting tighter. You will have blood tests to check your calcium and thyroid hormone blood levels.

    • Medicine may be given to bring your thyroid hormone level back to normal. A partial thyroidectomy means your thyroid gland can produce some thyroid hormone. You may need to take medicine daily to keep your thyroid hormone level steady. You may be given pain medicine after surgery. Radioactive iodine may be given if your thyroid gland was removed because of cancer. This medicine may kill cancer cells that were not taken out during surgery.
    • Deep breathing helps open air passages and prevent a lung infection. Slowly take a deep breath and hold the breath as long as you can. Then let your breath out. Take 10 deep breaths in a row every hour while awake. You may be asked to use an incentive spirometer to help you with this. Put the plastic piece into your mouth and slowly take a breath as deep and as long as you can. Hold it as long as you can. Then let your breath out.

    What Is The Outlook For Hyperthyroidism

    Why You Need to Know Your Body Type | Thyroid | Ectomorph | Ask Dr. Motley Ep.4

    Hyperthyroidism is a manageable and treatable condition, and most people do well with treatment. While some forms of treatment require you to take medication for the rest of your life, your thyroid hormone levels will be normal.

    Unfortunately, untreated hyperthyroidism caused by Graves disease may get worse over time and cause complications. If you have Graves disease, ask your healthcare provider questions about how you can best manage your condition.

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    What Is The Difference Between Hyperthyroidism And Hypothyroidism

    Hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism are medical conditions that both have to do with the amount of thyroid hormone your thyroid makes and releases the difference is how much.

    Picture something related to the word hyper. Most likely, you just thought of something fast or full of a lot of energy. When you have hyperthyroidism, your thyroid is overactive and produces and releases too much thyroid hormone.

    In the medical world, the prefix hypo- means low or not enough. When you have hypothyroidism, your thyroid is underactive and doesnt make and release enough thyroid hormone that your body needs.

    What Is Your Complication Rate

    The answer you want to hear is the surgeons own complication rate for the procedurenot the average 1% reported in the medical literature. If the surgeon only does two thyroid surgeries a year and one patient had a problem, that makes it a 50% risk, said Roman. Dont be shy about asking for this information. Said Sosa, Its the ethical responsibility of the surgeon to report the truth and to know their own data.

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    What Happens After A Fine Needle Aspiration Biopsy

    Most people will be able to resume their normal activities right away. You can remove your bandage within a few hours.

    The site of the biopsy might be sore for a day or two after the procedure. You can take over-the-counter pain medicines if you need to. Follow any other specific instructions that your healthcare provider gives you.

    It may take several days to get your test results from the pathology lab. Ask your healthcare provider when you can expect to get your results back.

    If your thyroid nodule is not cancer, you might not need any further treatment. Your provider may want to monitor your nodule, though, and you might need another biopsy in the future. In some cases, your healthcare provider may offer thyroid hormone pills. These can sometimes decrease the likelihood of nodules growing back.

    You will probably need surgical treatment if your nodule appears cancerous. Luckily, most thyroid cancers are curable.

    Sometimes, the pathologist cannot determine for sure whether your nodule is cancer. In this case, your healthcare provider might recommend a repeat biopsy or surgery. Whatever your test results, you can work with your healthcare provider to develop the best possible treatment plan for you.

    How To Lower Thyroid Antibodies

    5 Reasons Why People Get Thyroid Problems and How to Avoid ...

    However, using thyroid medication has its limitations and practice shows that most patients get their antibodies lowered only partially. There is a holistic nutritional approach to Hashimotos disease that has demonstrated great results in lowering thyroid antibodies because it looks for factors that cause them initially.

    Hashimotos disease occurs as a result of complex interactions between genetic and environmental factors. According to the recent research conducted and published by Prof. Fasano, there is a new factor that plays the key role in the initiation of the autoimmunity.

    Increased intestinal permeability or leaky gut syndrome is a condition when intestinal gut walls lose their protective effect and let through the antigens that cause the overreaction of the immune system. Leaky gut is a reversiblecondition and is one of the factors that should be addressed first.

    There are many scientific publications that support this treatment approach and the idea that

    Hypothyroidism caused by Hashimotos disease is reversible in some cases

    Since most environmental triggers of autoimmune overreaction are dietary, identifying and removing these factors should be the next step. This strategy has not only has promising results in dampening the autoimmune reaction but also in lowering thyroid antibodies levels.

    There are many other dietary factors that can trigger Hashimotos disease. But we are all different and what works for some people may not work for you and vice versa.

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    Understanding Thyroid Ultrasound Results

    Your doctor usually analyzes the results before consulting with you about possible follow-up tests or conditions that may be indicated by the ultrasound. In some cases, your ultrasound may show images of nodules that may or may not be cancerous or contain microcalcifications, which is often associated with cancer. But according to

    Small Gland Big Job: Why Your Thyroid Is So Important

    September 11, 2018Endocrinology, General

    Did you know you have a butterfly with a shield in your neck? That’s right your thyroid gland is a butterfly-shaped gland with a name that comes from the Greek word for “shield.” The thyroid gland sits at the base of your neck below your Adam’s apple and weighs less than an ounce. This small but mighty gland controls your metabolism the process of converting food into energy. Your thyroid is so important that you are unable to live without it unless you have medicine to replace its hormones.

    The thyroid gland is part of the endocrine system the system that includes all the glands in your body that regulate essential functions. Your thyroid produces several hormones that are crucial to your growth, development, and good health. The thyroid makes hormones called T3 and T4 that regulate everything from your breathing, heart rate, muscle strength, body temperature, and so much more. Think of your thyroid as the engine that keeps your body running.

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    Final Thoughts On Reasons Why People Develop Thyroid Issues And How They Can Avoid Them

    Thyroid problems are the first step in a vast host of other diseases. It is wise to start now in living a healthier lifestyle, so your risk for developing this condition is much, much lower.

    You dont have to be the perfect model citizen just take care of yourself and make sure you eat well, exercise smartly, are careful about X-rays, and never miss an annual check-up!

    Signs Your Thyroid Isnt Working Right

    Why Do You Still Have Thyroid Symptoms When Your Lab Tests Are Normal?

    by The Surgical Clinic |

    The thyroid gland is an important part of the endocrine system. This butterfly-shaped organ regulates important hormones that influence many functions in your body. These hormones also influence how well your body performs physically and mentally. So, if youre feeling unwell with no other explanation, your body might be giving you signs that your thyroid is off.

    Keep in mind, your body is a complicated and intricate system that operates on many levels of performance. However, over time many factors can build up and disrupt the balance of your body. Specifically, your systems can become overactive or underactive in order to compensate or respond to these factors.

    Thyroid function problems, in particular, occur when the thyroid either becomes under or overused. These conditions are called hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism, respectively. Both of these conditions can cause several problems. In order to explore twenty signs of thyroid problems, our Nashville, TN surgeons have divided them into ten signs for each of these separate conditions.

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    How Will You Partner With The Rest Of My Medical Team

    After surgery, youll likely need monitoring of your thyroid hormone levels and, in the case of thyroid cancer, follow-up treatment and testing. You want to know that the people taking care of different aspects of your thyroid disease or thyroid cancer are working together and communicating as a team, said Sosa. At Duke, weve created a clinic where you, your surgeon and your endocrinologist can meet at the same time, in the same place.

    So When Should You Be Concerned About Thyroid Nodules

    Like I mentioned a moment ago, most of the time these nodules dont lead to any serious problems. However some doctors like doing surgery and in cases where there are multiple nodules, many will suggest removing the entire gland because its easier to remove the entire gland rather than remove individual nodules. In my opinion there are really only a few situations when surgery should be recommended to remove a thyroid nodule:

    #1 should be pretty obviously- When the thyroid nodule is cancerous. Obviously if the nodule is malignant, then this would be the best and most justifiable reason to have it removed. Fortunately, only about 5% to 10% of nodules are malignant.

    #2. When the thyroid nodule is shifting or compressing the esophagus/trachea or the larynx. Sometimes when the nodule has gotten so big it can shift the larynx or your voice box causing inflammation leading to a change in your voice, difficulty with speaking or just that feeling of being tired and hoarse. If the nodule shifts the trachea to the side you can experience difficulty with swallowing or breathing- So be aware of these symptoms as well.

    The last thing I wanted to cover in todays video, are the two tests you should have done if nodules are identified. If your doctor has not run these tests, its critical that they are run. These tests identify whether or not you have an autoimmune disease

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    What Each Lab Means

    • TSH: High TSH levels mean the thyroid gland is not making enough of this hormone , while low levels mean it is making too much . However, it should always be checked within a larger context of thyroid labs.
    • Free T4: High free T4 can indicate an overactive thyroid while low levels can indicate underactive thyroid function .
    • Free T3: High free T3 also indicates overactive thyroid. Low levels may mean that your body isnt converting T4 into T3 very well and may indicate hypothyroidism even if TSH and free T4 are within the normal range.
    • Reverse T3: High reverse T3 may mean that not enough free T4 is being converted into free T3, and can cause symptoms of hypothyroid even if TSH and T4 are normal. Chronic stress and high cortisol levels can raise reverse T3.
    • Thyroid antibodies: High levels of either lab indicate that the immune system is attacking the thyroid and can be a basis for diagnosing an autoimmune condition.

    Disorders Of The Thyroid

    Why You May Need a Full Thyroid Panel

    Health concerns arise if your thyroid produces too much hormone or not enough hormone . Nearly 27 million people have thyroid conditions, and 13 million people are suspected to remain undiagnosed. Hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism are diagnosed through a physical exam by your doctor and through blood tests. It’s important to see your doctor as soon as possible if you have concerns about your thyroid.

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    How Much Of My Thyroid Will Be Removed

    It depends on the reason for your surgery. If your thyroid is overactive , or the whole gland is enlarged and causing symptomssuch as a feeling of pressure or difficulty talking, breathing or swallowingthe whole thyroid should be removed in a procedure called total thyroidectomy, said former Duke endocrine surgeon Dr. Julie Sosa, MD. If only half your thyroid is enlarged and causing symptoms, but the other half is normal, then half should be removed, said Sosa.

    For the most common type of thyroid cancer, which is generally low-risk, your doctor may recommend removing all or half your thyroid, depending on your circumstances. If you have intermediate- or high-risk cancermeaning it has spread outside the thyroidwe recommend total thyroidectomy, said Sosa.

    Sophisticated imaging called neck mapping can help your surgeon determine ahead of time how much of your thyroid and which lymph nodes, if any, need to be removed. While not in use everywhere, neck mapping is routine at Duke. The best chance for a cure for thyroid cancer is making sure we remove all of the disease, said former Duke endocrine surgeon Dr. Sanziana Roman, MD. We dont want to overtreat, but we also dont want to undertreat. So knowing exactly how much surgery a patient needs is very important.


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