Thyroid Disorders

Your thyroid gland sits in the middle of your neck above your sternum and controls many active bodily functions, such as regulating growth and metabolism, by excreting hormones into your blood stream. Over-activity and under-activity can lead to increased anxiety or depression, and they are often attributed to a thyroid disorder.

Causes of Thyroid Disorders

The thyroid may be overactive or under-active, meaning it is excreting too much or too little into your blood stream, causing sharp periods of weight loss or weight gain. Cysts can be identified in your gland and masses can also be present.  In addition, the thyroid can sometimes swell in response to certain blood messengers.  The diagnosis of thyroid disease requires both blood tests and thyroid scans. Thyroid disease is most common in individuals who lived primarily in the Midwest portions of the United States due to lack of iodine.

Symptoms of Thyroid Disorders

 

  • Muscle & joint pain
  • Body temperature below 98.5 degrees or chronic cold hands and feet
  • Unexplained weight gain or loss
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Irritability or mood swings or depression
  • Hair loss, dry skin and/or brittle nails
  • Poor concentration or memory
  • Swelling of the neck or snoring

 

If you are experiencing a combination of these symptoms, please schedule an appointment with one of our specialists. 

Diagnosis & Treatment

Diagnosis is made with blood tests and thyroid scans.  A good physical examination is also essential to assess and treat thyroid disease.  A long history of your weight gain and loss will help the provider assess your condition.  Let your doctor know about any medications you have taken whether herbal or prescribed.  Tell the doctor about any homeopathic medications that you take or have taken in the past.

All thyroid problems and disorders can be evaluated and studied by the endocrinologist here at Physicians East. Treatment may include replacement of missing or inadequate hormones or excision of abnormal thyroid tissue.  Your provider can decide what approach is the right one for you.