Hypothyroidism Specialist

Orem Internal Medicine

Jeffrey G Ogden, M.D.

Board Certified Internal Medicine & Preventive Medicine Specialist located in Orem, UT

Symptoms such as feeling tired, gaining weight, and always feeling cold, indicate that you could have hypothyroidism. Hypothyroidism occurs when the butterfly-shaped thyroid gland in your neck does not make enough hormones, causing bodily functions to slow down. Call Dr. Jeffrey Ogden at Orem Internal Medicine in Orem, Utah, to stop your symptoms from interfering with your life.

Hypothyroidism Q & A

by Jeffrey G Ogden, M.D.

What is hypothyroidism?

Hypothyroidism happens when your thyroid gland does not produce enough hormones, causing every organ in your body to slow down.

The thyroid is part of your endocrine system and works to regulate your metabolism. Metabolism includes how fast your heart beats, and how fast your body burns calories.

What are the symptoms of hypothyroidism?

Hypothyroidism develops slowly, and many of the symptoms mimic those of aging or other health issues. As such, many people do not notice the onset of hypothyroidism. Some of the more common symptoms include:

  • Fatigue
  • Weight gain
  • Decreased mental sharpness
  • Joint pain
  • Dry hair and skin
  • Heavy or irregular menstrual periods
  • Erectile Dysfunction
  • Depression

What are the different types of hypothyroidism?

The two most common types of hypothyroidism are autoimmune and idiopathic:

Autoimmune Thyroid Dysfunction

Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis

Your immune system attacks your thyroid, causing it to become inflamed and enlarged. This induces the thyroid to stop making enough thyroid hormones. The gland eventually shrinks as it stops producing thyroid hormone.

Grave’s Disease

Your gland is stimulated by the autoimmune antibody to increase production of thyroid hormone.  This makes you “hyper” or high in thyroid hormone.  Eventually, the gland “burns out” and is unable to produce more hormone making you “hypo” or low thyroid.

Idiopathic

The majority of people low in thyroid hormone are this type. There are two common times in life when the thyroid gland may fail to produce the hormone in adequate amounts.  The first is during adolescence.  The second is with increasing age, typically after 40.  Just like the vision, hearing, and joints tend to wear and not function as well, the thyroid gland may lose its function over time.

How is hypothyroidism diagnosed?

Blood tests determine if you are hypothyroid.  These tests are done on-site at Orem Internal Medicine and the results are discussed with you at the time of your visit.

How is hypothyroidism treated?

There are a variety of thyroid supplements to treat hypothyroidism.  It is important to remember that, though it may be made in a laboratory, levothyroxine (T4) is the bio-identical hormone that your gland used to produce by itself.  There are combination preparations such as Armour Thyroid ® or Nature-Throid ® that combine levothyroxine (T4) and liothyronine (T3) in the same pill. Blood tests will allow Dr. Ogden to determine which preparation is right for you.

If you think you may have hypothyroidism, call or make an appointment online today with Dr. Jeffrey Ogden at Orem Internal Medicine in Orem, Utah.