Hypothyroid or hormone imbalance/.low hormones?

by Michelle
(Sarasota, FL USA)

Female , 45, 5’2” 117 and gaining have been as high as 125 in recent years. Normal weight 102. I was a smoker up until pregnancy. I have had some issues since my twin pregnancy 11 years ago. After the birth I had trouble losing weight, I was exhausted, beyond the normal baby exhaustion, low libido and acne, chronic yeast infections from 8 IV bags of antibiotics after the C-section. No other history of antibiotics. Reported to gyno, tested normal. After several years of detoxing and cleansing, parasite, colon, and infrared sauna, I was back to my pre-pregnancy-ish weight of 105 but only after I began smoking again

6 years ago, things escalated, hair loss all over but front hair line thinning, more exhaustion, chronic headaches, no sex drive, painful sex, and adrenal fatigue. I began using progesterone cream, 40 mg per day the second half of my cycle, which was 21 days, thinking I was in perimenopause. I now know I was using it incorrectly. But the first 30 days I felt great, the second 30 days I felt bad, until I discontinued the progesterone cream. During those 2 months I was diagnosed with IC, vulvodynia and PVD after a 3 month long flare. Removed triggers, wine, tomatoes, began seeing a IC specialist who performed a bladder wash with lidocaine. After the wash, and the cessation of progesterone, I had no more IC flares. I had periods where I could feel my bladder, but no full flares, maybe a year or 2, then no more bladder symptoms at all. I accumulated new symptoms like peeling nails, breast tenderness, cracking heels, worse acne, became cystic, air hunger and a whole host of other thyroid related symptoms. I was unable to have normal orgasms, they would be very weak and take much effort and time. Sex was still often painful, but not as bad. Mid cycle pain, short cycles. 21 days, headaches breast tenderness.

I quit smoking 5 years ago, gained 11 pounds in 8 days. Lots of cellulite, loose flab, not my normal body composition. TSH test was normal somewhere in the mid 2’s. 2.3 I think. I changed my diet, vegetarian, gained weight, vegan, gained weight, Insulin Resistance diet, gained weight, ate totally raw diet for 30 days and had what I believe to be an adrenal crash and I gained weight. I had been working out 6 days a week sometimes twice a day in efforts to lose weight. I began taking herbs to support the adrenal glands and went to a strictly gluten free, paleo diet, no beans, corn, potatoes or rice, and cut back on my exercise keeping it within adrenal protocol limits. I did not lose weight nor did I alleviate any symptoms. 2013 I had a full hormone panel. I am not sure at which point of my cycle these were taken, I assume luteal phase, but I don’t recall. My numbers were as follows: progesterone 2.4 mg/ml, estradiol 95 pg/ml, dhea sulfate 141 mcg, LH 11.7 mIU/ml, proalctin 10.9 ng/ml, testosterone total 27 ng/dl, free testosterone 1.4 pg/ml. Gyno said normal.

My weight slowly crept up another 5 pounds over the next few years despite diet and exercise, I was now up 20 pounds in 5 years. I stopped all exercise, took steps to heal on a full adrenal program including pregnenolone 50 mg per day, which seemed to help the most, copious amounts of supplements, vitamin and herbal, iodine, selenium, B’s C’s sea salt, in bed by 10-11 nightly, relaxed and de-stressed as much as possible. I also tried DIM avail, thinking I must be estrogen dominant but it made me feel horrible and incredibly angry within 5 days. I stopped DIM but continued with the other supplements. I saw very little improvement except with the headaches.

Saw several doctors over this period, all tested normal until I found a thyroid specialist. I was diagnosed with Wilson’s Syndrome, low T3, high RT3. I was treated with T3 cycles, the Wilson’s protocol, and saw some rapid improvement, initially. I lost 5-7 pounds over next 30-60 days, was less exhausted and the diffuse hair loss stopped and began re-growing, though I am still losing hair at the front hairline and in the part area. After T3 cycles, my doctor put me on 1 grain of NDT, which made me feel pretty bad, assuming that T3 was pooling from poor adrenal function, my doctor put me back on a steady dose of compounded T3, 15 mcg twice a day, on which dose I am still on and doing well. I also began eating an almost zero carbohydrate diet, less than 20 grams per day since June of 2014. Though I initially lost another 5 pounds on this low carb diet 6/2014, I still gain weight with the addition of any carbs past 25 grams per day. I was maintaining weight of 112 with diet for about a year, until 5/2014 when I started gaining slowly. Current weight 117 and rising.

But I still have issues not resolved with thyroid treatment. My current symptoms are inability to lose weight despite dieting and exercise, and I am slowly gaining again. I can eat almost no carbohydrates, but I do maintain a fairly steady, normal blood glucose, tested randomly by meter. My hair continues to thin at the front hairline and part. Acne and it’s cyclical. Low sex drive, painful sex, burning with lubrication. I retain water with carbohydrates that takes days of zero carbs to lose. I can burn no body fat, no matter how much or what type of exercise I partake in. I am tired mid-day. My nails and heels are still peeling and cracked.

I began progesterone cream again last cycle, before I found your site, at the wrong dosage. My breast became very tender, and I began to feel my bladder, had some frequency and urgency, no burning or pain. I bought Natpro and began using properly for 2 days when I goy my period. This cycle I started on day 8 but my bladder began to act up so I stopped it and started it again day 12. I am 2 days in and I have gained 2 pounds though I have not changed my diet. I am using 100-200 mg daily, probably around 180 mg and I am not sure what to do now. I feel that I am going to develop an IC flare if I continue using it and I am thinking that my estrogen is still actually too low as well. Here are my current hormone numbers as of 1/2015 taken on day 21 of my cycle I believe. FSH 6.6 mIU/ml, LH 3.7 mIU/ml, progesterone 12.3 ng/ml, estradiol 105 pg/ml, dhea 166 mcg/dl, total testosterone 28 ng/ml, free testosterone 1.8 pg/ml, insulin 1.9 uIU,mL, cortisol AM 11.3 mcg/dl.

My question, am I missing a sex hormone imbalance or just overall low hormones possibly? Am I just under dosed hypothyroid? I added in 1 grain NDT and saw no improvement. 1.5-2 grains NDT and I experience overstimulation of the thyroid. My body temps are 97.9-98.2, and do not rise significantly with increased thyroid dosing. I score a 49 on the progesterone questionnaire. Any help is greatly appreciated.

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