Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Young, But Not So Invincible!

Taylor, a 10-year veteran volunteer for 9Health Fair, was incredibly surprised last spring when she received her Blood Chemistry screening results.  She was not experiencing acute symptoms and had recently undergone routine testing with her primary care physician.  Thankfully, the 9Health Fair Blood Chemistry screening - featuring 28 levels - is more comprehensive than typical screenings.  As a result, Taylor’s thyroid result came back flagged as high.  After taking the results to her doctor, Taylor was diagnosed with hypothyroidism; a condition where the thyroid is not making enough thyroid hormone.

Looking back, Taylor realized her symptoms had been a slow downward slide.  She didn’t realize how little energy she had and how tired she really was.  She worked with her doctor and began medication to help her thyroid function better.  Now Taylor reports a 50% increase in energy compared to this time last year and she believes she has found just the right dose of medication for hormone maintenance.

Now that it is almost spring fair season again, Taylor is gearing up for another year of making a difference in the lives of others by volunteering at her local 9Health Fair.  However, this year her perspective is different.   She knows firsthand just how important it is to take care of her health.  The body does not always let you know right away when something is wrong.  Even if someone is young and feels healthy, Taylor wants others to know the Blood Chemistry screening is worth it to know for sure.

Has your life been positively impacted by a 9Health Fair?  Share your inspirational story here!


2 comments:

  1. If thyroid readings were "high," why was the blood level "low"?

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi Kay,

    the thyroid secretes a substance called thyroxine. Thyroxine helps manage your metabolism and balances energy intake with with the bodies energy output. Too much thyroxine (hyperthyroidism) makes you jittery, increases your blood pressure and heart rate and can cause weight loss. Too little thyroxine (hypothyroidism) makes you tired, can cause weight gain and a general lack of energy. A part of the brain called the pituitary controls the thyroid by secreting a substance called Thyroid Stimulating Hormone or TSH. When there is too little thyroxine being secreted by the thyroid gland and circulating in the blood, the pituitary secretes TSH which tells the thyroid gland to make more thyroxine. When there is enough thyroxine circulating in the blood, the pituitary senses this and stops secreting TSH which tells the thyroid to stop making thyroxine. In Taylor's case, the thyroid stopped making any thyroxine (we don't always know why, perhaps autoimmune). The pituitary released TSH to get her thyroid to secrete more thyroxine but it couldn't make any more. The pituitary keeps releasing more and more and more TSH to get the thyroid making thyroxine. Eventually, the TSH levels become very high and the thyroxine (also sometimes called T3 and/or T4) levels are very low. This is the classic presentation of hypothyroidsim. It is easily managed by taking synthetic form of thyroxine which turns the pituitary down and it stops secreting TSH. The thyroxine levels also increase. I hope that explains why TSH is high and Thyroxine in the blood is low.

    Marte Meyer, PA-C, MBA
    Vice President
    9Health Fair












    ReplyDelete