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The Thyroid Crisis: Unraveling the Missteps of Undiagnosed and Mistreated Hypothyroidism

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The thyroid, a small butterfly-shaped gland in your neck, plays a crucial role in regulating many bodily processes. An alarming number of people suffer from undiagnosed thyroid issues or receive improper treatment after diagnosis. I will shed light on the reasons behind these missteps and offers ways for patients to take control of their thyroid health - like I did. To learn more about hypothyroidism in general, read my article on that HERE). 

Why are so many people undiagnosed?

  • Symptom misinterpretation: Doctors often treat symptoms without delving into their root causes, leading to misdiagnosis of hypothyroidism as depression, high blood pressure, PCOS, or other conditions. The thyroid gland is the master gland and is in charge of the production and regulation of sex hormones, so a woman experiencing gynecological issues and symptoms might be treated with a drug to patch the symptom...without ruling out the thyroid as the cause. 
  • Outdated testing: A majority of doctors rely on one or two old school thyroid blood tests from 1973! If you don't get comprehensive thyroid tests - it can result in an inaccurate diagnosis. When a doctor does not test nor understand how to evaluate Free T3 and Reverse T3, they are an uninformed thyroid doctor. If you want more in-depth information on assessing and solving a potential thyroid issue, you can download the list of comprehensive thyroid tests and more information HERE.
  • Overemphasis on lab results: Physicians may focus too much on wanting to target a specific number in a lab range, or being afraid of a certain lab result - all while overlooking the bigger picture of a patient's health and the individuality of each patient. Some patients need their thyroid levels to be at certain levels within the reference range to experience the full elimination of symptoms, and others can be lower on that spectrum and feel great too. 

Why are so many patients mistreated after diagnosis?

  • Limited understanding of thyroid connections: The medical community often fails to recognize the intricate relationship between thyroid hormone levels and other bodily processes, such as adrenal gland function and blood glucose management.
  • T3 misconceptions: Doctors may be fearful or cautious in prescribing T3 thyroid hormone  (liothyronine sodium) when it is needed, resulting in inadequate treatment.
  • Lack of ongoing education: Many doctors do not stay up-to-date with the latest thyroid treatments, hindering their ability to provide optimal care. 
  • Suboptimal hormone administration: Physicians may not administer the ideal levels and/or combinations of thyroid hormones to patients, further complicating treatment.
  • Flawed dosing practices: Conventional once-a-day thyroid hormone dosing for T3-containing replacement may not be the best approach for all patients.
  • Big Pharma influence: The pharmaceutical industry has perpetuated the notion that T4-only treatment (levothyroxine) is a universal solution, while also spreading misinformation about natural desiccated thyroid (NDT) treatment.
  • Nutrition and thyroid health: The medical community often overlooks the connection between nutrition and thyroid health, leaving patients struggling to achieve optimal thyroid hormone metabolism.

Thyroid patients must take charge of their own health by educating themselves about their condition beyond what their doctor tells them. This includes researching alternative treatments, understanding the relationship between nutrition and thyroid health, and advocating for themselves during medical appointments.  

About the author:  Elle Russ is the #1 bestselling author of The Paleo Thyroid Solution, a world-renowned thyroid expert, and master coach.Take her Thyroid Masterclass HERE 

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