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Thyroid tests are usually done to check how well your thyroid gland is functioning. The thyroid gland is a butterfly shaped gland present in the lower front region of the neck and is one of the endocrine glands present in our body.

It secretes various thyroid hormones which are essential for normal body functions. Increased or decreased secretions of these hormones disturb regular body functions.

For many days I had been experiencing discomfort, too much sweating, and rapid heartbeats. That made it difficult to breathe and sleep, so I decided to visit my doctor.

Do you need Thyroid Test?

The doctor asked me few questions initially and I answered them. He did a routine physical examination like pulse counting and blood pressure check.

The doctor also examined my hands which were shaking slightly. He diagnosed me with high blood pressure (Hypertension) and suggested that I take medicines for B.P. control.

I had been taking those medicines for months and was feeling well but suddenly I started to lose weight. Initially, I was happy that I lost some weight, but still my weight was dropping and there was a slight swelling in my neck.

I consulted my doctor again and told him my history. The doctor told me to continue the medicines and prescribed thyroid function tests.

After I did all the lab tests, my lab reports showed that I had high levels of Thyroxine (T4), Triiodothyronine (T3) and low levels of Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH).

I went back to the doctor to show my lab reports. After reading the lab report, the doctor told me that I had hyperthyroidism. That means my thyroid gland was overactive and producing excess thyroid hormones.

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He prescribed me a new medicine named methimazole and told me to continue the old one too. Till date my treatment is going on and I’m taking all the medicines regularly.

The doctor also told me that, in future, there may be a need for more extensive diagnostic tests like radioactive uptake test, thyroid scan and thyroid ultrasound. These thyroid function tests are done in cases of hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism.

Symptoms of Hyperthyroidism

He informed me that some symptoms associated with hyperthyroidism are weight loss but increased appetite, palpitation, rapid pulse, shakiness, warm moist hands, swelling in neck, nervousness, enlarged eyes, nausea, vomiting, loose bowels, mood swings, aggressiveness etc.

Symptoms of Hypothyroidism

On the other hand, the symptoms associated with hypothyroidism are hoarseness, dry itching skin, irregular menstrual cycles, increased sensitivity to cold, thinning of hairs, enlarged thyroid gland, puffy face, slow heart rate, muscle ache, stiffness of join, pain, depression etc.

Most of the time, the cause of thyroid dysfunction is genetic and familial history is important to diagnose the condition. Therefore it is necessary to tell your doctor about your complete medical and family history.

If you ever started observing symptoms like these, you may need to consult your physician, as only they are qualified to diagnose and help you. The most important thing is not to panic.

Keep calm and believe in your doctor. However, if necessary you can always take a second opinion.

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