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Thyroid symptoms: hypothyroid, Hashimoto's

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bubbles
12 hours ago, Kittygiggles said:

Certainly, thyroid disease can cause psychological symptoms. This can't account for cases where the mental disorder precedes the thyroid disease and SSRI treatment. There is limited evidence from animal trials demonstrating that fluoxetine interferes with the thyroid-pituitary axis. It is hard to investigate whether SSRIs could be a possible trigger of Hashimoto's (or other autoimmune conditions) in humans but it is likely a fruitful endeavor. This is because SSRIs are very destructive so by some direct or indirect mechanism, it seems plausible that they would trigger an autoimmune response in some people.

 

I was probably a bit abbreviated in my response! I'm not saying there's no connection between SSRIs and hypo! It may be the case. I'm just suspicious, as I said, that a lot of it is effect not cause. I agree, I'd like to see more research.

 

Given my own experiences, I think that diagnosis of thyroid disease is imperfect, and that maybe some of us are diagnosed later than one might hope.

 

I guess I'm wondering - given how "slow" thyroid disease can be, maybe some people are in the early stages of thyroid disease when they have psychological symptoms and then eventually the TSH is elevated, but by then they've already been on an SSRI.

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Karma

Blondiee

 

Undesirable symptoms when starting or adjusting thyroid usually means there is another problem like insufficient iron or an adrenal problem.  If you have a Reverse T3 problem increasing Armour will result in anxiety and irritability.  I lived this in 2018.

 

I always recommend only making one change at a time so you can determine whether the change was beneficial or detrimental. If increasing your thyroid med caused those symptoms you might want to back it off and see if you feel better.  Other than that please ensure your iron is optimal and that you have investigated adrenal stability.

 

If you are stable with your reduction from antidepressants a thyroid med change should not result in undesirable symptoms.  However, if you aren't in a stable place reducing your antidepressant my experience has been that any change can throw the system off. 

 

Love and light,

Karma

 

 

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Blondiee1915

Hi Karma,

 

thank you you so much for your input.  How did you resolve your issues?  Was it iron or cortisol or both? 

 

I do have low cortisol throughout the day and I have been working on it for the past two years with little improvement.  I have tried various adrenal complexes and then this summer I started adrenal cortex.  My functional MD said my cortisol is low but not too bad and gave me 5 mg of hydrocortisone to try.  I tried it for two days but became emotional and was crying for no reason so I stopped it.  I am still experiencing fatigue on a daily basis and it is one of my biggest symptoms.  

 

My iron is optimal but my ferritin is pretty low. And I don’t know how to increase it to be honest.  I have tried various B12 complexes as I was told optimal iron yet low ferritin can be a methylation problem. My MD told me to continue to take iron bc of low ferritin but I have been reading how it can be toxic bc my iron saturation is at max so I am not sure what to do.  

 

The good thing is that armour thyroid brought my reverse T3 from 19 to 13 which is great,  however my  FT3 and  FT4 remain unchanged.  

 

If if you have any advice I would really appreciate it ❤️ 

 

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Marsha

One thing I found was that I felt better taking adeno b12 and avoiding the methyl b12. Also I quit stressing about my thyroid labs and realized my high rt3 was from too much stress including stressing about my hashimotos. My irons and cortisol are fine. I feel much better now and will check my rt3, ft3, ft4, tgab, tpo and rt3/ft3 ratio again soon.  I did have to flush out the rt3 but we are individuals so checking and optimizing all the idiosyncratic facets of hashimotos as I can without becoming consumed by chasing it by the tail and never catching up has worked wonders in managing it. Just my thoughts and experiences. 

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Blondiee1915

Hi @Marsha,  thank you for sharing.  My Reverse T3 went down from 19 to 13 after starting armour.  I have heard that about methyl B vitamins I did try adeno as well.  I do have MTFHR mutation and I am trying to figure out which B12 works best bc I pretty much feel the same on adeno and methyl yet my ferritin is not going up yet iron levels are optimal.  

 

I agree that stress plays plays an important role in all this for sure.  I am becoming hypochondriac with everything now thyroid, iron and cortisol and WD on top.  I am getting bad anxiety as well not sure if it is the thyroid meds.  Will have labs done in a month 

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Marsha

I have one MTHFR that supposedly makes me predisposed to being anxious, not handling stress and etc... What I learned was that we do not have to let our genetics control us. Our genetics play a much smaller role in determining our propensity to develop, for example, autoimmune diseases. Many of us struggle at one time or another or even more often with anxieties regarding our health. Getting out of the sympathetic and learning and practicing tools to keep us in the parasympathetic can do much to alleviate the resulting stresses on our autonomic nervous system. Anyway, that's what's been the case for me and especially working with a physician or two who have been like minded. 

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ChessieCat
16 minutes ago, newtonsmom2000 said:

Hi Alto, this will have to be quick, but I wanted to answer your question.

I kept telling my doctor there was something wrong with my thyroid medication.  I was using ERFA, the Canadian form of NDT.  I finally learned to ask for the correct tests .  I was very concerned when my revT3 levels were very high for me.  I happened to be a part of a forum on Facebook that started a sub group for people with thyroid problems.  I met a very knowledgeable woman who looked at my labs.  In the middle of that, the doctor (a functional/integrative MD) refused to address my medication issues or listen to me.  My knowledgeable friend (I checked out everything she was telling me) urged me to get some T3 added to my current meds.  The doctor refused.  My friend suggested I try lowering my current dose for a short period- days to a few weeks, to see if I felt any differently.

 

I made a minor decrease and all I can say is I felt like I had awakened from the dead.  That was enough indication I needed to find a new doctor and take action!  I took a chance again and reduced my dosage further.  Again, not as big a change but I felt remarkably better!  My friend suggested I just stop my NDT for a maybe up to 3 weeks to allow the revT3 to clear.  I was terrified at the thought.  I found a doctor that was willing to prescribe 5 mcg T3.  I started taking them.  Eventually, I felt comfortable enough to stop the NDT and have never gone back.  The best way I can think to describe how this felt was this: I felt like I was in a cave, in total darkness, a beam of light breaks through and then suddenly I am standing in the sunlight and feel alive!  I take T3 only now (~ 60mcg).

 

Since I've been slowly getting my mental capacity back I was able to piece together how I ended up with thyroid problems in the first place.  I am a polio survivor.  Throughout most of my life, no one has hesitated to stick me into or under radiation producing machines.  By the time I was in my 40's my thyroid just quit.  My sister, also a polio survivor, had hers removed in her late 20's because it had grown so large.  She had the type of polio that effected her throat and upper respiratory function.  Surprisingly, neither one of us has ever had cancer.

 

Taking T3 has been a challenge while I am weaning off the clonazepam.  It's been difficult to increase my dose (I am under a physician's care after kissing a few frogs) because it is very hard to know what is producing symptoms.  Plus, my adrenal system is touchy. 

 

I highly recommend the book that really helped me: The Paleo Thyroid Solution by Elle Russ.  She refers the reader to Paul Robinson who has written excellent books on using T3 only and also wrote a general book, The Thyroid Patients Manual.  Paul had quite a story of how he came to cope with Hashimoto's and get correct treatment.  His thyroid dysfunction turned his life upside down.  I don't know how he escaped being relegated to using psych meds.  Elle Russ' story details 10 years of terrible frustration  encountered just trying to get a doctor to listen to her.  This doesn't just happen to people with psych med issues.

 

Hope this helps.  And thank you for all you do.  If I can be of any further help, let me know.

 

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Blondiee1915

Thank you for posting this @ChessieCat.  I was nervous NDT (armour thyroid) would drive my Reverse T3 high but it actually brought it down.  I guess it all depends on an individual and it can go either way.  I have my labs in a month will keep everyone posted if I notice anything 

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Kittygiggles
On 1/1/2019 at 12:53 AM, bubbles said:

 

I was probably a bit abbreviated in my response! I'm not saying there's no connection between SSRIs and hypo! It may be the case. I'm just suspicious, as I said, that a lot of it is effect not cause. I agree, I'd like to see more research.

 

Given my own experiences, I think that diagnosis of thyroid disease is imperfect, and that maybe some of us are diagnosed later than one might hope.

 

I guess I'm wondering - given how "slow" thyroid disease can be, maybe some people are in the early stages of thyroid disease when they have psychological symptoms and then eventually the TSH is elevated, but by then they've already been on an SSRI.

 

I am sorry that I misunderstood your post as indicating that you were closed to the possibility of an SSRI causing thyroid disease but you've since clarified that you are open to that. I agree with your last post completely: the slowness of progression renders an SSRI cause in many patients unlikely. It is a long journey from the first autoantibody creation, to sufficient tissue damage to cause symptoms, then to the final diagnosis which can be many years into symptoms.

 

I think we're all diagnosed too late, often as a result of misdiagnosis. It has made me question how long ago my Hashimoto's started and it seems probable it precedes fluoxetine. However, as long as there is evidence to suggest it is one of a few possible causes, I have to keep investigating it. 

 

My hope is that all thyroid disease sufferers discover their root cause, eliminate it if still present, and then reverse the disease. I've heard that autoimmune conditions are becoming more prevalent. Perhaps a solution for future sufferers would be to advocate for autoantibody testing. At the first sign of them, one could at least make the simple lifestyle changes (e.g. eliminating processed foods, many medications etc) that may prevent or slow down the progression dramatically.

 

Thank you @ChessieCat and @newtonsmom2000 for this:- 

 

"I made a minor decrease and all I can say is I felt like I had awakened from the dead.  That was enough indication I needed to find a new doctor and take action!  I took a chance again and reduced my dosage further.  Again, not as big a change but I felt remarkably better!  My friend suggested I just stop my NDT for a maybe up to 3 weeks to allow the revT3 to clear.  I was terrified at the thought.  I found a doctor that was willing to prescribe 5 mcg T3.  I started taking them.  Eventually, I felt comfortable enough to stop the NDT and have never gone back.  The best way I can think to describe how this felt was this: I felt like I was in a cave, in total darkness, a beam of light breaks through and then suddenly I am standing in the sunlight and feel alive!  I take T3 only now (~ 60mcg)."

 

This is an important account of the value of listening to one's body when making thyroid treatment decisions. As I am likely experiencing an RT3 issue, it helped me greatly. I have also experienced a dramatic improvement in symptoms when reducing T4. I think some thyroid disease advocates should be more open minded about thyroid treatment, which I think could include revising and varying dose recommendations based on individual response to the many forms of thyroid hormone in question. T3-only medication makes a lot of sense in some cases and I suspect it could help me.

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