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Why do I have a thyroid problem?

Q: I am 38 years old man. I am working in a petrochemical plant for the last 14 years. I have been feeling sleepy & restlessness. My face has swollen up. But I ignored as it recovered within 2-3 days. I consulted a doctor but after laboratory tests Thyroid function abnormality was detected. Some of the abnormal blood tests are - T3: 60.1 ng/dl, T4: 1.74 ug/dl & TSH: 98 mlU/ml (Method: RIA). Triglycerides and cholesterol levels were 246 & 280 mg% respectively. The treatment has started correctly and improvements observed. My question is what may be the reasons & what future care should be taken?

A:You are suffering from primary hypothyroidism which is a common thyroid disease. To know the cause, get anti-TPO or FNAC from thyroid gland (if you have an enlarged gland). Most common cause is autoimmune thyroid disorder which is usually irreversible meaning you need to take medications lifelong. Increased cholesterol and TG is part of disease and should become normal as you become euthyroid. Now you need to get your TSH only done after six weeks of starting medicines; if still high, then increase the dose by 25 micrograms only and again repeat TSH after six weeks. Do this till your TSH becomes normal; then test is needed yearly only. Goal of treatment is to keep TSH in normal range. Prognosis is good and there is nothing to worry about the disease. Please take the medication on empty stomach only. Hope this will relieve your anxiety.

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