An Update on My Hashimoto’s Journey

2014-06-20 15.58.57It’s been a couple of months since my diagnosis of Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, so I thought I would give an update on how things are going.

My first thyroid lab panels showed the following numbers along with the listed range for “normal”:

TSH: 2.79  [ 0.35 - 4.94]

Free T3: 2.57 [1.71-3.71]

Free T4: 1.01 [0.84-1.51]

TPO Antibodies: greater than 2,000 (the test only measured up to 2,000) [0.0-5.6]

As you can see most of my numbers were “normal” except for the antibodies which were immeasurable.  My Dr. told me that was the highest antibody count she had seen.

She prescribed for me levothyroxine and a selenium supplement.  I did some research and went back to her office and we decided to try Armour instead of the levothyroxine.  I also chose to supplement with several Brazil nuts a day instead of the selenium supplement.

Now I have to be honest with you, I sat there for days looking at that prescription and debating if I should take it or not.  During this time I read the book (affiliate link) A More Excellent Way and spent a lot of time in prayer and seeking God.  As I mentioned in my original post, I do not believe Hashimoto’s is going to be my story.  I believe that I will be healed from this, either supernaturally or through things God has given us like herbs and essential oils.  The problem was, when I first got that phone call I went into full on crazy-lady-mode and quit dairy and grains (I was already gluten free) and started finding every herb and oil and food that could heal me.  God convicted me on that.  I cannot heal myself through these things. Healing comes from God.  He has given us things that promote healing as a gift, but it’s foolish for me to say “Oh, I’m going to heal my Hashimoto’s using oils and herbs and diet.” Anyways, I took one dose of the Armour and it made me feel incredibly awful, so I quit taking my medicine. (I don’t recommend this, I’m just telling you my crazy journey!)

Then I went through a period of several weeks where I didn’t touch an herb or an oil, I quit my special diet (of which I noticed absolutely no difference) and I just tried to focus on what God’s word says about health and healing.  That’s when I wrote this post.

Finally I felt like I was ready to start adding in some oils and herbs to my daily routine.  By week 5 or 6 I was feeling great.  I rarely had a day where I couldn’t get out of bed, I started to have ENERGY again, my cycle regulated for the first time since my miscarriage, and FINALLY, after months and months, I am just now starting to see a slow and steady drop in my weight (I gained 15 lbs without changing a single thing, and those suckers have stuck around for months.)  I was so excited to get my lab work redrawn.  I just knew I was going to see some drastic improvements in the numbers.

Last week I got the results from my second blood draw. I said a silent prayer before opening the letter.

“Dear Sarah, Labs look about the same as before.”

I was so disappointed. They weren’t exactly the same, but pretty darn close.

This time my TSH was 1.93 (which is definitely an improvement from 2.79), my Free T3 was 2.59 (a .02 increase), my Free T4 was 0.95 (a .06 decrease) and my antibodies were, once again, greater than 2,000.  They also tested my Thyroglobulin antibodies which were 20 [normal is less than 41] and my reverse T3 which was 15 [normal is between 8-25].  My celiac panel also came back negative.

Now here’s the thing, there could have been a dramatic improvement in my antibodies and we don’t even know it, they could have gone from 5,000 to 3,000, but we will never know.  All I know is they are entirely too high.

Last night I expressed my frustration to my husband.  I just don’t know what to do.  Every Dr. gives different advice on whether I should be on hormone replacement since my numbers are all “normal” except for the antibodies. Most people in the alternative medicine field discuss the importance of gluten free. I did that for months and months and months and noticed no difference when I started eating gluten again. (And by eating gluten, I mean a slice of properly prepared sourdough bread at maybe 1 meal a day.)

I do know I don’t want to get to the point where my thyroid dies.  That seems to be the prognosis.  So I pray, and I ask for wisdom, and I explore my options.  But I FEEL so much better which gives me so much hope.

So now I have to decide what to do next. Should I attempt the Armour again? Should I keep on keeping on and get more labs drawn in a couple of months?  Should I go back to special diets? (I already eat real food and avoid GMOs and refined sugars.)  This is where I am right now – just keeping it real.

Have you ever had important medical decisions to make?  How did you handle the decision?