Thyroid problems are very common these days. However, there are tests for thyroid patients that help the doctor to evaluate your test reports. Based on the results and the symptoms, the doctor prescribes medicine. The tests are a series of blood tests that assess how well your thyroid gland is performing.
The thyroid is a little gland. It is located at the lower front part of the neck. It is shaped like a butterfly. The thyroid gland is responsible for producing hormones. That helps with various functions on the body. Some of the functions include energy generation, metabolism, and mood. Thus, to know how your thyroid is performing, the doctor asks for blood tests to be done.
What does Thyroid Gland do?
It has been noticed that people are not aware of their condition most of the time. They believe that the thyroid hormone is not that important. But this statement can be dangerous. If left untreated, thyroid hormones can cause severe issues.
The thyroid gland produces hormones that help to regulate the digestive system and the heart rate. It also plays a significant role in the development of the brain, muscle control, bone maintenance, etc. When the thyroid gland is not working properly, it could overproduce or underproduce the hormone. In some cases, the thyroid glands become enlarged or develop extra layers of tissue.
About 12% of people get affected by a thyroid hormone imbalance in their lives. However, women are more likely to be affected by it than men are. To help diagnose the thyroid-related issue, it is crucial that you know the symptoms.
Symptoms to Lookout for
The common symptoms are unintentional weight gain/loss, feeling tired, low, mood swing, fatigue, muscle ache, bowel problems, heart palpitations, irritability, etc. These symptoms are common with other health-related problems as well. Symptoms like fatigue and weight loss are often brushed off.
However, if you have more than one symptom for a longer time, consult the doctor. Simple blood tests for thyroid patients will help determine if them to track their treatment.
The blood test usually reveals whether your gland is overactive, underactive, or normal. Based on the results, the doctor may ask for a thyroid test or even an ultrasound. The tests help to check the thyroid gland activity, any tumors, etc. In some cases, there may be a need for sample tissue. The tissue helps to find out if the gland is cancerous or not.
If the results of the tests for thyroid patients do not show cancer, the doctor may prescribe general medicine. The medicine will help regulate and normalize the thyroid levels. After some time, the doctor may re-run the tests to see whether the medicine is working or not.
The thyroid profile is the common name for the test. The names tend to vary from one lab to the other. Thyroid profile tests are a combination of tests that are done together. It helps come to an accurate conclusion, so the treatment can begin.
T 3, T4 and TSH
This combination of tests is usually done together. The T3 tests help to diagnose hyperthyroidism. It also helps to know how severe it is. For patients who have a hyperactive thyroid, the levels are high. T3 is rarely useful in figuring out if a person has hypothyroid or not. There is also a Free T3 and Reverse T3 test.
The T4 test is known as the thyroxine test. The T4 exists in two forms such as Total T4 and Free T4. The Total T4 test for protein is bonded in the blood while the Free T4 test measures the free T4 present in your blood.
TSH is the best way to know thyroid function. Any changes in the results are usually taken as a warning sign. A high level of TSH suggests hypothyroidism while low level indicates hyperthyroidism. There are other tests as well. Abnormally high levels may indicate Grave’s disease.
Treatment for Thyroid
Based on the results of the blood tests, the doctor prescribes the treatment. The main goal of the treatment is to normalize the thyroid levels.
If you are suffering from hypothyroidism, you may be prescribed a drug called levothyroxine. This synthetic tablet helps to replace missing thyroid hormones in the body. However, it is important to know that the doctor may adjust your dosage after observation. Thus, the above-mentioned tests for thyroid patients are helpful to keep track.
The treatment may also involve drug therapy. It helps to block hormone production. In some cases, the doctors suggest surgery to remove a part of the gland or the entire gland itself.
Lifestyle and Dietary Changes
More than the medicine, your lifestyle changes dictate how well you will manage the abnormal thyroid level issue. Since there is no cure for thyroid-related issues, it is best that you educate yourself. Millions of people across the world live a fulfilling life even with thyroid problems. All you have to do is adjust a little and be willing to learn.