Thyroid disease or high estrone?
I am a 36 year old female and have been suffering with what were thought to be hypothyroid symptoms. I have suffered with horrible heavy periods and very painful cramps during ovulation and menses from 13 years of age until the birth of my first child, after which I suffered from post-partem depression. My thyroid was tested and my ob prescribed anti-depressants and sent me to a shrink. I remained on anti-depressants for the next 6 years- along with birth control until the birth of my second child (5 years ago). About 6 months ago I started noticing my hair was falling out and my nails had deep vertical ridges in them. I felt cold and tired all the time, my hands and feet felt numb, my blood pressure was low and rosacea was starting to spread across my cheeks and chin. I also had extreme constipation and dark circles under my eyes. Mentally I felt completely overwhelmed. I kept experiencing bursts of anger and rage and then deep sadness, a complete emotional roller coaster and I had no idea what was going to happen next. I went to my GP and he tested my thyroid. My T4 was high and my TSH was low but still in range. My B-12 was low (354pg/ml) and my vitamin D was low (27ng/ml). At this time I knew nothing about thyroid function. He explained that maybe it was my depression returning and put me back on anti-depressants and added armour thyroid. For the first 4 weeks I felt great and then things quickly went downhill. I felt like I had a golfball stuck in my throat and I started hallucinating. I couldn't get out of bed- I was completely exhausted and an emotional wreck. I slowly weaned myself off the anti-depressants (NIGHTMARE!!) and slowly began to feel somewhat normal. I started noticing that during the first two weeks of my BC pack I felt pretty good but the 2nd two weeks I felt terrible. I discontinued the yasmin and went back to my GP for more lab work - the only medication I had been on for 3 weeks was armour thyroid.
Here are my labs (luteal phase)
estradiol 296 pg/mL (range 48-440)
estrone 508 pg/mL (range 16-173)
FSH 2.0 mIU/mL (1.5-9.1)
LH 0.9 mIU/mL (0.5-16.9)
progesterone 0.8 ng/mL (2.6-21.5)
Free T4 1.4
Free T3 3.4
Vitamin D 25-OH 29ng/ml (30-100)
My GP upped my armour to 45mg/day and sent me to an endocrinologist. Many of my hypothyroid symptoms had started to go away. Within the first 3 minutes of my appointment the endocrinologist started asking me if I had tried cymbalta and did I know that armour is ground up pig organs and he actually said "Gross!" I should have walked out right then. Needless to say I didn't go back. But I did get a copy of the lab tests he ordered. I tested high for TSI- a grave's disease antibody- my TSH dropped to .02 and my free t4 and free t3 were high but still in range.
I have spent hours researching my condition and lab results- I know I have low stomach acid which has contributed to my vitamin deficiencies. It seems those should have been addressed first and why not a single doctor that I have been to addressed what is a severe Vitamin D deficiency is beyond me. (I have been alchohol and gluten free for 3 years) After discovering this AMAZING website I now know I am definitely estrogen dominant and lacking good progesterone.
I have been slowly weaning myself off of the armour thyroid and have been using progesterone cream for 11 days- 150-200mg a day. I have definitely noticed my estrogen levels rising with some uncomfortable side effects- but I am forging ahead and adding more cream to counter the surge. I have also started taking pro-biotics and betaine hydrochloride after every meal. I am also taking 6,000 iu of vitamin D along with a B complex, omegas, and literally a handful of other supplements. My rosacea is almost gone (thank god!!) - I have energy and feel motivated to actually DO things- yesterday I went to the gym and mopped the floors (baby steps :) )
I still cannot find an explanation as to why a 36 year old woman would have such high estrone levels- (508 pg/mL) it seems these numbers only exist for post-menopausal women. Does high estrone equal estrogen dominance?
Also how long should I stick with the 150-200mg progesterone daily?
Thanks for letting me share my story- I hope it inspires others to take control of their health. Thank you again for creating this website and sharing all of your knowledge and insight. I am forever grateful!!