Hypothyroidism is a disorder wherein the thyroid does not produce enough thyroid hormones for the body. In many patients hypothyroidism is treated with medicine designed to supply the body with the thyroid hormones it is no longer producing itself.
In many patients hypothyroidism is asymptomatic, meaning there are no clear signs that you may have the disorder. However, when symptoms do present themselves, it’s because of a reduced amount of thyroid hormone in your system, and as a result your metabolism and sympathetic nervous system may be “slowed down” resulting in:
- Muscle Cramps
- Dry, itchy skin
- Increased sensitivity to cold
- Weight gain
- Decreased sweating
- Female infertility
Most people just require thyroid hormone supplementation in the form of a pill. Most often it’s Synthroid (Levothyroxine) or triiodothyronine. The pills supply additional thyroid hormone to make up for the deficit found in hypothyroidism. Typically the patient will ingest the pill once a day following identification of the proper dosage. They will then be required to have annual blood work performed to ensure that the medication continues to be effective.