Do You Have A Toxic Thyroid?

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Photo Credit: Joshua P. Light via Compfight cc

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Does one side of your throat feel larger than the other?

Have you been reading information about goiters and hypothyroidism and wondering, “Is this my problem?”

Have you considered the other (rarely mentioned) thyroid condition: hyperthyroidism?

In other words…

Have Toxic Nodules Hijacked Your Thyroid?

What Are Thyroid Nodules?

Nodules are lumpy masses that develop on the thyroid of an individual for unknown reasons. Thyroid nodules are very common. It’s believed that up to half of all people have at least one, whether they are aware of it or not.The majority of thyroid nodules are benign, yet in a few cases, the nodules may become toxic and “go rogue”.  

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What Do You Mean “Become Toxic”?

If the nodule begins to produce it’s own thyroid hormones on top of what the rest of the thyroid is producing, the body becomes flooded with these hormones. This in turn may wrecks havoc on your metabolism and other body systems. Depending on how much of theses extra hormones are being produced, the person can show signs of full-blown hyperthyroidism or few to no signs at all.

Signs That You May Have Toxic Nodule-Induced Hyperthyroidism

  • Swelling on the front of your neck (goiter)
  • Shortness of breath
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Nervousness
  • Fatigue
  • Irritability
  • Inability to rest or sleep
  • Heat intolerance
  • Increased sweating
  • Irregular or rapid heartbeat
  • Increased frequency of bowel movements
  • Increased appetite
  • Unexplained or sudden weight loss

Don’t Get Paranoid By This List!

These signs can be related to many other conditions (whether serious or not at all). I would say be concerned about this particular issue if you seem to have 3 or more of the systems on the list. I had 4: increased sweating, heat intolerance, rapid heartbeat, and frequent bowel movements.

Think You Have Toxic Thyroid Nodules?

Contact your doctor or functional medical professional to have them run a complete thyroid panel on you. They will also run an exam to check for nodules. This may include using an ultrasound to get an approx size of your thyroid gland and possibly a biopsy to screen out cancer.

Treatment Options For Toxic Nodules

Treatment options depend on the path you decide to take. I went the alternative route which focused on the types of food I was eating and getting my gut healthy. I consulted with a naturopath and functional medical doctor but due to financial reasons was unable to work with them. The information that they shared with me was gold and has helped me greatly! For those of you in a similar situation and who wish to use a more holistic approach to healing, I would recommend getting as far as you can with your conventional doctor and then seek out a functional medical doctor who specializes in endocrine problems. Most will charge a fee but the information they offer can change your life! To make the most out of your consult I would recommend sending a copy of all the tests that your doctor has run prior to the consult. This will maximize the face-to-face time with them and you both will get more out of it.

photo credit: Thyroid Scar @ 2 Weeks via photopin (license)

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If you decided to go the more conventional route, that most common treatments for hyperthyroidism (that my HMO doctor informed me) are to place the patient on medication to counteract the extra thyroid hormone, radioiodine treatment to kill the thyroid, or a thyroidectomy.

Am I Cured?

I don’t know? I have yet to go back to my HMO to see if my thyroid levels are back to normal. The advice I got to fix my gut and change my diet made the few symptoms I was having go away, so I no longer have that sense of urgency to follow-up with my doctor as before. I do realize that I need to follow up at some point and eventually I will, promise.
Whatever path you take, know that there is relief and you don’t have to live with this condition! 
Do you have or do you know someone with toxic nodules or hyperthyroidism? Please share below.

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