Thyroid disorders affect around 20 million Americans, and while women are five to eight times more likely to have thyroid disease, men can develop it, too. Since the thyroid is responsible for regulating so many different organ systems, an abnormal thyroid can cause a wide range of health problems. At Thyroid Endocrinology and Diabetes, with offices in Dallas, Grand Prairie, and Mansfield, Texas, the skilled team of endocrinologists offers on-site diagnostic and treatment services for thyroid disorders and any associated symptoms. Call the nearest office or use the online scheduler to make an appointment today.
Your thyroid gland produces hormones like thyroxine, which is responsible for regulating a broad spectrum of body functions like your metabolism, digestion, heart function, brain development, muscle control, and much more.
If your thyroid gland is overactive and produces too much thyroxine, your body burns through energy much faster than it should, and this results in a condition known as hyperthyroidism.
If your thyroid gland is underactive and isn’t producing enough of the hormone thyroxine, your body uses energy at a much slower rate. If you have an underactive thyroid gland, you have a condition known as hypothyroidism.
Because your thyroid gland regulates so many different body functions, both hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism can cause a wide range of issues.
If you have hyperthyroidism, your symptoms may include:
An overactive thyroid may also develop into a goiter — an enlarged gland that can interfere with your ability to breathe and swallow.
If you have hypothyroidism, you may experience symptoms like:
Many of these symptoms are so general that patients ignore them for years, or misattribute them to other problems and don’t get the correct treatment to address abnormal thyroid activity. This can lead to a number of life-threatening complications with your health, such as heart problems, nerve damage, infertility, and even death.
The team at Thyroid Endocrinology and Diabetes uses blood tests to measure the amount of thyroid hormone and thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) in your bloodstream. In some cases of hypothyroidism, your specialist may also recommend antibody testing or a thyroid iodine uptake scan to identify the cause of your disorder and to confirm a diagnosis.
A TSH test can identify if you have a thyroid disorder even before you start to show symptoms. Studies suggest that screening for thyroid failure in patients over the age of 35 is an effective preventive care measure that can prevent future complications with your health.
Thyroid Endocrinology and Diabetes also offers ultrasound testing to check for lumps and nodules that can’t be detected with a physical exam alone. If your specialist suspects the presence of nodules, the practice provides the innovative Afirma® Thyroid FNA Analysis test to confirm the diagnosis and get a full picture of the type of nodule you have.
If you have hyperthyroidism, your specialist can prescribe medication to prevent your thyroid gland from producing excessive amounts of hormones and to reduce your symptoms. Severe cases may require surgery to remove part of your thyroid gland.
If you have hypothyroidism, your specialist can prescribe medication or hormone replacement therapy to rebalance your thyroid levels and bring them back to normal, which in turn reduces your symptoms.
Don’t delay treating a thyroid disorder if you notice any troubling signs. Call Thyroid Endocrinology and Diabetes or use the online scheduling tool to make an appointment to get tested today.