Our clinic has decades of experience testing for and treating Hashimoto’s Thyroid Disease.
We Can Help With Your Thyroid!
Hashimoto’s Disease is an autoimmune disorder that occurs when the immune system views the thyroid as a foreign intruder and attacks it. It is initially characterized by alternating swings between Hypothyroidism (low-functioning thyroid) and Hyperthyroidism (overly-functioning thyroid).
Hyperthyroidism symptoms occur as the thyroid cells are destroyed. This happens because the hormone held in “reserve” is not regulated properly and is released into the bloodstream in greater amounts than normal. Symptoms of Hyperthyroidism are similar to an overly active metabolism and can include:
- Panic attacks
- Increased heart rate
- Shaky hands/tremors
- Regular bouts of diarrhea
- Weight loss
- Hair loss
- Excessive sweating
- Inability to sleep
- Muscle fatigue
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Its symptoms can sometimes compel an emergency room visit and can lead to a diagnosis of a cardiac or anxiety disorder. If Hyperthyroidism is not treated, it can lead to a complication called Thyrotoxicosis, also called Thyroid Storm. Symptoms of the disorder can escalate and also include accelerated heart rate, vomiting or nausea, fever, psychosis, agitation, and death.
When the thyroid gland is under attack from the immune system, it becomes degraded which causes it to not have enough hormone to meet the body’s needs and Hypothyroidism emerges. It’s estimated the cause of Hypothyroidism in about 90% of cases is actually Hashimoto’s Disease. In fact, most “conventional” medicine doctors do not test for Hashimoto’s and this leads to a lot of patients not being treated correctly.
Symptoms of Hypothyroidism include:
- Constant fatigue
- Inability to lose weight and weight gain
- Hair loss
- Loss of outer third of eyebrows
- Dry skin
- Cold intolerance
- Aches in joints and muscles
- Loss of libido
- Brain fog and memory loss
“Dr. Spurlock is an incredible doctor, treatment provider, and human being. He is my miracle doctor as he saved my life when no other specialist could figure me out. He worked with me until he did.” – T.C.
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The Thyroid is a small butterfly-shaped gland that sits at the front of the neck. It produces hormones which control every cell and organ in your body and regulates the metabolism. The Thyroid gland mainly produces T4 hormone along with a small amount of T3. The T4 hormone is inactive until it’s converted into T3 through your liver, GI tract, brain, heart, and kidneys.
The Thyroid is important in functions such as metabolism, central nervous system, heart rate, digestion, breathing, liver function, body temperature, and the health of the reproductive system. Gut health and Thyroid health both depend on each other to function properly so if there’s trouble in one area, there’s going to be trouble in the other.
Causes of Hashimoto’s Disease
Hashimoto’s Disease was the first disease ever to be recognized as an autoimmune disorder. Dr. Hakaru Hashimoto, a Japanese physician, studied histology samples from surgically excised thyroids as part of his M.D. thesis in 1912. The disease was later named after him. Click HERE to learn more about the history of this disease and how it was discovered.
Hashimoto’s is frequently diagnosed as Depression, Bipolar disorder, PMS, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Fibromyalgia, or another autoimmune disease. Hashimoto’s can be hereditary and is more common in women than in men. It is most likely to surface between 45 to. 65 years of age, though it can happen at any age.
Hashimoto’s Disease can be caused from nutritional deficiencies such as iodine, selenium, iron, and zinc. Gluten and other inflammatory foods can also cause it and should be removed from the diet immediately. These types of food include corn, wheat, soy, dairy, sugar, artificial sweeteners, yeast, and anything that is considered to be GMO (Genetically modified).
“I have been to many doctors in my quest for health. Dr. Spurlock is the only doctor who has searched for the root cause of my problems to get to a solution. He continues to work with me on getting my life and health back. Very grateful to have him on my side. This is why I travel 400 miles to see him. It’s worth every mile.” – Brenda
The Link Between Gut Health and Hashimoto’s
Up to 80% of your immune system is located in your gut. If you have imbalances in your gut bacteria (dysbiosis), inflammation, or other disorders it is much more likely that you will suffer from autoimmune disease which includes Hashimoto’s. In fact, if you already have another autoimmune disorder, you are at increased risk for developing Hashimoto’s Disease. When the gut is unhealthy, the lining of the intestines can become compromised. Instead of it having a smooth appearance and acting as a barrier to keep toxins out, unhealthy bacteria or yeast (candida) can cause microscopic holes in the lining. This allows toxins, undigested food particles, and waste products to seep through. Not only does this create inflammation throughout the body, but also in the gut itself. Because the body’s role is to defend itself against invaders, it even begins to attack itself which creates autoimmune diseases including Hashimoto’s Disease. Other auto-immune responses can include:
- GI issues including bloating, constipation, diarrhea, and pain in the abdomen
- Leaky gut syndrome
- Nutrient malabsorption
- Type 1 Diabetes
- Celiac Disease
- Inflammatory Bowel Disease
Why is Hashimoto’s Disease Difficult to Treat?
We see many patients who are frustrated with the level of care that they’ve received and wonder why they are not feeling any relief from their medication. There are a multitude of reasons for this, and unfortunately for the patient, this can lead to a lot of frustration and a waste of time and energy trying to find a physician who is up-to-date on testing and treating Hashimoto’s. How can this disease be treated correctly, when most times it’s not even considered in Thyroid testing? The answer is that it can’t.
Because most conventional medicine physicians follow the “norm” and don’t stay up-to-date on modern testing and treatment protocols, the patient suffers.
Most doctors test TSH (Thyroid Stimulating Hormone) which can give some indication as to whether the Thyroid gland is over or under-producing. Not only is this system of testing antiquated, it mainly gives an indication of how the pituitary gland is signaling the thyroid. If there’s not enough T3 available to the cells, the pituitary is going to signal the thyroid gland to produce more and more T4. Some doctors do also test the T4 hormone levels, however, this is the inactive form of Thyroid hormone. These two tests will not show other disorders of the thyroid such as the inability to convert T4 into T3, Hashimoto’s, or a condition known as Reverse T3.
The conventional medicine approach to treat a thyroid problem is to prescribe Synthroid or Levothyroxine which are both drug versions of the T4 hormone. This happens time and time again even though the only thing that has been tested is the TSH level and possibly, T4.
This is why we see so many patients who are both frustrated with the medical community and don’t understand why they don’t feel any better. A TSH test will never reveal if a person isn’t converting T4 into T3, and they will continue to get sicker and sicker. Additionally, a TSH test is never going to identify Hashimoto’s since it is an autoimmune condition.
Hashimoto’s Disease occurs when the body’s immune system attacks the Thyroid gland. In order for it to be diagnosed correctly, there are two specific tests which detect elevated amounts of antibodies in the blood that need to be run. The presence of Thyroid peroxidase antibodies (TPO) and Thyroglobulin (TGab) antibodies will indicate whether or not the Thyroid dysfunction is autoimmune or not. Treatment protocol differs for the Hashimoto’s patient.
“I’ve been seeing nurse practitioner Elise Lewis. She’s welcoming, friendly, knowledgeable, listens to the client, and does well with explaining things in a manner that is understandable. I feel confident in working with her to resolve my issues. She seems flexible in her willingness to work with the patient in setting up a tailored game plan and/or meds needed to address and correct issues.” – R.M.
Renewed Vitality Dallas Providers are Experts in Diagnosing and Treating Hashimoto’s Disease
Dr. Spurlock and his team of nurse practitioners are highly educated and experienced regarding all types of thyroid disorders. They understand that Hashimoto’s often has multiple contributing factors and they utilize every resource to identify them so that our patients are treated correctly.
Our initial lab panel is quite comprehensive and checks all hormone levels in addition to all aspects of the thyroid gland. Since all of the glands work synergistically with each and dysfunction in one can cause problems in other areas, we often find imbalances in other hormones as well. Once we are able to identify every contributor, then we are able to treat this disease successfully.
Our office also offers detailed testing for gut health. This allows us to identify issues such as:
- Malabsorption of nutrients
- Food sensitivities and/or allergies
- A comprehensive look at amounts of good bacteria, harmful bacteria, toxins, and yeast (candida) that can contribute to leaky gut and autoimmune disorders
Our goal is to offer our patients a comprehensive view of their health so that the appropriate treatment protocols can be prescribed and the patient can heal. We want our patients to have confidence in our providers and realize that we must earn that. The first step in treating Hashimoto’s Disease is diagnosing it. This seems like common sense, and it is! We are up-to-date on treating illness at its root cause. Once we’re able to do that, symptoms disappear and health and vitality ensue.
Give us a call at (214) 389-1234 to schedule your appointment today. Our New Patient Coordinators can guide you through our process and answer any questions that you may have.
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