Sometimes the cure is worse than the disease.
There have been many cases where the actual medical treatment to “cure” one condition has led to a multitude of other health problems.
Essentially doctors treat one illness, only for it to be replaced by another health problem.
According to a recent study prepared for the annual meeting of the Endocrine Society, there is one treatment for hypothyroidism that causes early death in 90% of those who receive it.
Thyroid hormone replacement therapy is almost universally accepted to be the best treatment for hypothyroidism and it is often started before people start showing any symptoms of an underactive thyroid.
This new study has found this to be a huge mistake, as this treatment has been linked to many premature deaths in adults.
Your thyroid gland secretes a hormone called thyroxine (T4). To produce this hormone, your thyroid gland needs to be stimulated by the thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH).
If doctors detect low levels of T4, they prescribe a synthetic version of it called levothyroxine to act as a T4 replacement.
But even when they find that you have normal T4 levels, they often prescribe this hormone replacement therapy, because elevated TSH suggests that your thyroid is underactive.
Scientists analyzed information of 1,054 elderly adults. This information included T4 and TSH readings.
They calculated the risk of death in the participants compared to those on thyroid hormone replacement therapy with their peers.
Those receiving therapy were 60 percent more likely to die early. This is alarming, but it gets worse.
When they compared people with normal T4 scores and normal TSH scores to people with normal T4 but elevated TSH scores who were receiving hormone replacement therapy, they found that people in the latter group were 90 percent more likely to die early.
Hormone replacement therapy was bad for people with hypothyroidism, but it was even worse for people who were treated prematurely.
These findings suggest two things.
1. Thyroid hormone replacement therapy increases your risk of death.
2. Elevated TSH scores as we age are normal and not a sign of hypothyroidism.
This is the reason why it is better to follow a healthy lifestyle to ensure that your body can balance its hormones naturally.