Experiencing problems with your thyroid can lead to a variety of symptoms that could interfere with daily life. Unfortunately, many people go months or years without a proper diagnosis, leading to more or worsening health issues. At Midwest Express Clinic, we take the time to listen to your concerns, and our on-site lab testing and diagnostics allow us to reach an accurate diagnosis and begin discussing treatment options all in one, convenient location.
For help diagnosing or treating thyroid disorders, visit us at Midwest Express Clinic today.
What is the Thyroid?
The thyroid is a small, butterfly-shaped gland located at the front of the neck at the base, and is part of the endocrine system. This system produces hormones that are responsible for regulating the metabolism, growth and development, tissue function, sexual function, reproduction, sleep, mood, and more. The thyroid gland is mainly responsible for manufacturing hormones that regulate the body’s metabolism.
Common Thyroid Problems
For individuals diagnosed with hyperthyroidism, it essentially means the thyroid is producing too much of the hormones. This condition is found more commonly in women than men, affecting roughly 1% of women. Common hyperthyroidism conditions or causes include:
- Graves’ Disease: overproduction of thyroid hormone
- Toxic Adenomas: nodules that develop on the thyroid and secrete hormones, upsetting the chemical balance
- Subacute Thyroiditis: inflammation of the thyroid that results in a “leak” of excess hormones; can be a temporary condition lasting from a few weeks to months
- Pituitary Gland Malfunctions
Those with an overactive thyroid could experience a variety of symptoms, including:
- Restlessness or trouble sleeping
- Nervousness or shaking
- Racing Heart
- Increased sweating
- Brittle hair and nails
- Muscle weakness
- Weight loss
Unlike hyperthyroidism, hypothyroidism occurs when the thyroid gland is not producing enough hormones. Because the body requires a specific amount of hormones from the thyroid for adequate energy production, hypothyroidism would result in experiencing lowered energy levels. Common causes of hypothyroidism include:
- Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis: occurs when the body attacks the thyroid tissue, leading to the tissue eventually dying and no longer producing hormones
- Removal of the Thyroid: whether removed via surgery or chemically destroyed
- Exposure to Excessive amounts of iodide: iodide is present in cold and sinus medications, heart medicine amiodarone, and certain contrast dyes given prior to some x-rays
- Lithium drugs
- Having had thyroid problems in the past
If this condition is left untreated, it could result in myxedema coma, which is a rare, but potentially fatal condition requiring immediate hormone treatment.
Diagnosing Thyroid Conditions
Midwest Express Clinic can help diagnose a thyroid condition by performing a simple blood test. Through lab testing, we will analyze and measure your thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) levels. Numbers that are too high or too low may indicate you are experiencing an issue with your thyroid. Our caring medical team will help guide you to next steps, discussing any recommended treatments, to help you feel like yourself again.