Yet another female friend was recently diagnosed with a thyroid issue, so I've got to put this up: Home Page of Mary Shomon. This is an author I found when trying to figure out why I felt SO much better when all I had been diagnosed with was "subclinical hypothyroidism."
She's a widely-cited author who is herself hypothyroid. She writes simply, aggregates research, and the one thing that comes out loud and clear: this is a fast-changing field!
Further, unless the blood tests are ordered, they relevant biochemicals aren't monitored (men? are you listening? there's research linking auto-immune disorders to pituitary and adrenal function) and even if they are the biochemicals are tough to build a diagnosis from.
Irrelevantly, my symptoms, for the curious or bored, or those who simply like to click
The symptoms I had that spontaneously went away when I had been taking supplemental thyroid for a few months, causing me to be absolutely shocked:
- Muscle tenderness (Me to chiropractor: "These pressure points on your chart? They ALL hurt!" He thought I meant that metaphorically I guess. I meant it quite literally; it hurt when people bumped into me.)
- Joint stiffness (Took me easily 5-10 minutes to stand up straight in the morning and about a minute after sitting.)
- Muscle spasms (Particularly of hands and feet. Certain friends might recollect notable outings where I eventually couldn't walk. I couldn't play the piano because my hands would cramp.)
- Vision weirdness (Suddenly, my world became pixellated, diagonally, through my field of vision, lasting about 20 minutes per episode. This isn't fun. Diagnosed as "early menopause-related migraine auras without headache or nausea." The first time it happened I was scared to death I was having a transient ischemic attack. Increased in frequency until it at least once/day.)
- Carpal tunnel. (Not completely gone, but much better than it was.)
There are of course the other typical symptoms, which are resolved:
- Hair loss (My scalp was visible through my fine, brittle hair; also hair loss on arms, legs.)
- Fatigue (at the worst of it, I'd collapse after work and barely move on the weekend. When I would wake it felt like when you have a fever and you just want to stay asleep but you have to fight your way back "up"... my heart would race from the effort.)
- Weight gain (70 lbs. in about three years. I've lost over half of it, but it bears reiterating: the thyroid supplement just gets me to "normal," it's not that thyroid hormone makes you lose weight. In fact, it's harder to lose weight now in the past since I'm much less fit than I used to be... although I'm a lot more motivated).
I have a few persistent secondary symptoms, almost all related to nutrient uptake and infection fighting; they're clearing up, though more slowly than I'd like.