Optimal Thyroid Function: The How's and Why's
- Free T3 and Free T4 should be
measured. I do not use TSH as the way to follow thyroid
function. I think TSH is best used to monitor pituitary function.
In the past, TSH was the best way to measure the need for thyroid and to
follow the amount of medication given, but I think that new evidence and
better ways of measurement now suggest otherwise. For evidence
read this article about the
measurement of thyroid function and this article about the effects of
replacement of both
T3 and T4.
- Thyroid should be optimized by adjusting to the upper 20% of normal
in the person with fatigue, obesity, depression, or risk of dementia.
This article documenting that
women in the lower
20% of NORMAL have about twice as much risk of dementia as do women in the
upper 20% of normal gives evidence for this strategy. The real
test of a physician is this: "Do his patients get well?" Most of my patients (with obesity,
depression, fatigue, and difficulty concentrating) get well when thyroid is
adjusted this way (in conjunction with other strategies).
- Armour thyroid works better than Synthroid for
most people. With over 280 hormones made by the pituitary
gland alone, I think it's prideful for physician's to think that we know all
that the thyroid does and every chemical that it produces. Armour
thyroid is a natural product made from pig thyroid gland. Not only
does Armour supply the T3 that's know to be missing from Synthroid, Armour
thyroid may have other hormones in it which you may not receive in
Synthroid. After swapping over two thousand people from Synthroid to
Armour thyroid, I've had less than 10 want to go back to Synthroid. I
cannot prove what I don't know about. So, I admit that postulating
that we don't know everything about the thyroid yet is not the most
scientific statement, but the test is this: "Do you feel as well as you
would like to feel while taking Synthroid?" If you do, then don't
change. If you don't, consider that maybe you need something else.
Here's a link to the
Armour Thyroid site if you want to know more about this product.