|Hypothyroidism is a ‘Silent Epidemic’ of Misdiagnosis, Doctor Says|
|News Releases - Health, Medicine & Nutrition|
|Written by Ginny Grimsley|
|Friday, 19 April 2013 14:06|
He Lists 3 Major Consequences for Sufferers
There are at least two aspects of a misdiagnosis that can cause patients harm, says Dr. Steven Hotze.
“First, it means you are not being treated for what’s actually causing illness; second, a misdiagnosis can lead to inappropriate treatments and medicines with side effects that can cause you harm,” says Dr. Hotze, founder of the Hotze Health & Wellness Center, (www.hotzehwc.com), and author of “Hormones, Health, and Happiness.”
“But there’s a quality of life issue that’s important as well. Many of my patients are women at or near middle age, and they often suffer from a multitude of symptoms including fatigue, low body temperature, brain fog, weight gain, loss of libido, hair loss and depression. Too often, they’re told by their physician that ‘nothing is wrong.’ ”
Women are more apt than men to pay attention to their bodies – and they’re right for doing so, he says. A women’s body includes a much more complex hormonal balancing act, with dramatic swings involved in the menstrual cycle.
Often, the women who come to him with that litany of symptoms do have a medical issue: hypothyroidism. Hotze calls it a “hidden epidemic” because it is so frequently un- or misdiagnosed.
The condition means the thyroid is not producing enough thyroid hormone, which affects hormone regulation. Hypothyroidism affects women seven times more frequently than men, Dr. Hotze says.
He reviews three ways in which a missed hypothyroidism diagnosis can affect a patient’s life:
“It has long been a cliché in our society that ‘pills are not often the answer for our mental and physical wellbeing,’ yet pharmaceutical companies continue to dominate treatment in our country,” Dr. Hotze says. “Hormone replacement therapy, as long as bioidentical hormones are used, has been proven to be a healthy and effective treatment for women suffering hypothyroidism.”
The distinction between synthetic and bioidentical hormones is important, he says; the latter have the same molecular structure as the hormones that are found naturally in the body, which means bioidentical hormone treatments cannot hurt patients. Counterfeit hormones – those that do not perfectly match the molecular structure of hormones in one’s body – can be dangerous, he says.
“Hypothyroidism and aging share an important common denominator – diminished or faulty hormone production -- so it’s easy to see how doctors can miss a diagnosis,” Hotze says. “But that makes it all the more important for physicians to listen to their patients, and that takes time. Hormone replacement therapy using bioidentical hormones help patients who are suffering extreme symptoms in both cases.”
About Steven F. Hotze, MD
Dr. Steven Hotze is the founder and CEO of the Hotze Health & Wellness Center in Houston, Texas. He’s a member of the American Academy of Otolaryngic Allergy and the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, and is the former president of the Pan American Allergy Society. He earned his medical degree from the University of Texas. Dr. Hotze and his wife of 44 years have eight children and 16 grandchildren.
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