Thyroid gland is the second most important endocrine gland, which has a vital role in the metabolism of human body. The secretion of hormones by this ductless gland has the most important function in the metabolism, which transforms food into energy and has an inevitable role in maintaining optimum health.
The butterfly shaped small gland of a low weight of less than one ounce is having two horizontal lobes nestled in front of the upper part of trachea. Many vital biochemical reactions in the organs of all the systems of the body, from digestion to sex are controlled by the hormonal secretions of the thyroid gland.
Hypothyroidism is the state of functioning of the thyroid, which remains below normal. Hypothyroidism, when it is too high, is diagnosed as Cretinism, the symptoms of which are moony face, coarse features, dilated nostrils, thick lips, slow and difficult speech, weakness, harshness and listlessness. But the fact is that this acute form of hypothyroidism is seldom seen. But 40% of general population is commonly afflicted with mild to moderate i.e. subclinical hypothyroidism.
The usual symptom in such cases will be fatigue. But the complaint present by the incumbent may not be fatigue. But, in due course ,they identify the problems of severe headache, recurring infections, dermatological problems, menstrual disorders, difficulty in concentration, chronic fatigue, fibromyalgia, depression, loss of equilibrium, paranoid symptoms , infertility, muscle cramps, lack of hearing, gout, arthritis, hypoglycemia, digestive disorders, sensation of pricking and burning, increased risk of heart diseases due to higher level of cholesterol etc. The famous physician Dr. Barnes has stated that cardio problems had been reduced by 94% in the case of persons whose thyroid function was made normal.
The protocol of functioning of thyroid is impressive, intrinsic and very interesting. Pituitary gland is stimulated by Hypothalamus (both of which are contained in the brain) to produce Thyroid Stimulating Hormones (TSH). Thyroid is stimulated by TSH to produce and release Thyroxine ( T4). Thyroxine (T4) is then converted to Triliodthyronine (T3) with the help of Selenium dependent Enzyme 5 deiodnase, which is four times more active than Thryroxine (T4). Liver and Kidney are the organs in which the transformation of T4 in to T3 takes place. It is also a fact that T4 can be converted as Reverse T3, which is physiologically inactive. Chronic and acute illnesses, prolonged stress, presence of toxic metals such as cadmium, mercury and lead, administration of steroids, ageing, exposure to chemicals or cold, diseases of liver and kidney, severe injuries, malnutrition, getting subjected to surgery or getting burnt ; are factors which inhabit the 5 – deiodinase enzyme.
This discrepancy in the peripheral function of T4 is called “euthyroide sick syndrome” or “low T3 syndrome”. This extra thyroid peripheral metabolism is monitored mostly by the liver, and to a lesser degree by the kidney. Corticosteroids, Propyl thiouracil, radioactive contrast agents, Amiodarone and Propranalol are drugs which affect the T3 metabolism.
The causes of sub clinical hypothyroidism are not diagnosed by the conventional medical practitioners and hence remain untreated. This is because of the fact, that the only method adopted by them, is the assessment of T4 and TSH alone, which may show normal values. The normal value for TSH is 0.35 to 5.0 mU/L and that of T4 is 9.0 to 20 pm01/L. But some doctors have difference of opinion regarding the normal range of the same. They opine that the above said range is too wide and therefore the range of 0.90 to 2.00 for TSH and 15 to 18 for T4 has to be adopted. This difference of opinion among the medicos put the common man in a dilemma. The most important hormone that circulate is T3 itself, which is seldom measured. When the level of T3 and T4 (which are circulating in the body) is lowered, TSH secreted by the pituitary gland is accelerated. When this number is higher than normal, it is the Pituitary's duty to “alert” up the thyroid to function harder and it is an indicative clue to the physician, that the thyroid requires additional support. Administering synthetic T4 hormone to make the level of TSH with in the normal limits is the conventional protocol adopted by doctors to treat such cases. Generally this course will help the patient to recover. But at times the intervention of Endocrinologists will have to be resorted to normalize the case.
The missing hormone will at times be T3. Then the same will have to be administered in addition to T4. This is the most active form of the thyroid hormone circulating in the system, which is given in a slow and steady releasing form or in twice daily dosage of Cytomel. Earlier it was thought that T3 level would become normal if T4 is given. But recent research studies have revealed that it is not necessarily true. It has been found that in cases of having T3 and T4 administered simultaneously, the performance of the patients in terms of learning capacity, mental flexibility and level of concentration, has improved and that depression has been alleviated. Palpitation of heart is caused, if T3 hormone is absorbed quickly, which happens when the transitory level of the hormone is high in the system. Therefore the procedure of sustained released form of T3, which is absorbed in 24 hours, is preferred.
Thyroid function is improved by using the herbal food supplement VASKO. It has further been noticed that the load of medical prescriptions had been reduced considerably by the doctors, due to dramatic improvement gained by the use of VASKO.