MY STORY(PART TWO): Graves' Disease and Hyperthyroidism
Posted Oct 28 2009 2:04pm
(I feel the need to back track and discuss my journey through illness in my quest to regain health. I have already discussed my diagnosis of Leaky Gut Syndrome. This post will discuss my diagnosis of Graves' Disease and how it affected my thyroid. My next posts will continue where this one leaves off.)
Graves' Disease is an autoimmune disease. I was diagnosed with Graves' Disease in 2001. Graves' Disease triggered my body to produce too much thyroid hormone. Thus, I developed hyperthyroidism. Symptoms include weight loss, fatigue, shakiness, and rapid heart beat. Prior to being diagnosed with Graves' Disease, I had all of these symptoms and then some. Prior to being diagnosed with Graves' Disease, I was put on antidepressants and anti-anxiety medicines. Now, I know, a large part of my problems are/were not mental in nature but are/were due to the tiny thyroid gland functioning improperly.
My endrocrinologist (the doctor who deals with endocrine disorders) suggested that I have my thyroid basically detroyed with radioactive iodine. In retrospect, I wish I would have tried holistic approaches before taking such drastic measures.
Once the thyroid is destroyed by radioactive iodine therapy, the patient usually becomes hypothyroid (or develops an underactive thyroid). After a few short months, I became hypothyoid and was put on a medicine called Synthroid. This medicine has to be taken for life since the thyroid is a gland that affects almost every part of the body. Without this tiny gland functioning properly, you could die eventually.
I never did well on this medicine. I always experienced extreme anxiety and nervousness while on this medicine. I always felt better for a few days when I refused to take it. But, then I would have to take the medicine because I would start feeling extremely tired and have other disturbing symptoms. While on this medicine, I also always needed an antidepressant. The antidepressants worked. But, no anxiety medicine (and I was given many) ever worked.