The New Thyroid Epidemicby DrLanzisera on 08/14/13
Does it seem like everyone is having problems with their thyroid these days? It's not your imagination. In doing research for our new book on thyroid disorders, we found that the ratio of people with potential thyroid troubles has increased from 1 in 13 Americans to 1 in 5.
1 in 5!
This number reflects those at risk of having thyroid hormone blood levels outside the functional range.
Laboratory Reference Range TSH: 0.5 – 5.5 (varies from one lab to another)
Functional Reference Range TSH: 1.5-3.5
In days long gone, doctors would only look at the accepted range of normal. Now we know better. So many patients actually did have hypothyroidism or Hashimoto's thyroiditis in the past but lab values did not confirm this diagnosis. We now know that the functional ranges of thyroid hormones are much more helpful in diagnosing a patient especially if they also have thyroid-related symptoms and signs including:
Low Thyroid Symptoms
•Increase in weight gain even with low-calorie diet
•Morning headaches that’s wear off as the day progresses
•Hypersensitivity to cold weather
•Poor circulation and numbness in hands and feet
•Neck and back pain, muscle pain and cramps, joint pain, hip and shoulder pain.
•Catches colds and other viral/bacterial problems easily and has difficulty recovering
•Wounds heal slowly
•Excessive amount of sleep required to function properly
•Chronic digestive problems (hypochlorhydria)
•Itchy dry skin
Low Thyroid Signs
•Dry or brittle hair
•Hair falls out easily
•Low axillary temperature (this may also be caused by any endocrine imbalance)
•Edema, especially facial (myxedema)
•Loss of outside portion of eyebrows