Thyroid Specialist

Amy M. Bruton, MD -  - Gynecologist

Woman to Woman Gynecology

Amy M. Bruton, MD

Gynecologist located in Raleigh, NC

Thyroid hormones affect just about every metabolic process in your body, so an imbalance can cause serious symptoms including unexplained weight gain, lethargy, and heart problems. Dr. Amy Bruton, a board-certified OB/GYN who practices at Woman to Woman Gynecology, offers a natural approach to rectifying thyroid dysfunction. If you suspect you have a thyroid hormone imbalance, call the Raleigh, North Carolina, office or book an appointment online.

Thyroid Q & A

What is the difference between hyper and hypothyroidism?

The thyroid gland in your throat produces thyroid hormones. These hormones affect metabolic processes, including:

  • Breathing
  • Body weight
  • Muscle strength
  • Menstrual cycles
  • Heart rate
  • Body temperature
  • Nervous system function

When you have a dysfunction in the production of these hormones, serious health problems can occur.

Hyperthyroidism refers to an overproduction of thyroid hormones. Symptoms include:

  • Heart palpitations
  • Diarrhea
  • Nervousness
  • Heat intolerance
  • Tremors or shakiness

Hypothyroidism refers to inadequate production of thyroid hormones. Symptoms include:

  • Fatigue
  • Weight gain
  • Intolerance to cold
  • Slow heart rate

Dysfunction in the thyroid gland, autoimmune conditions, and environmental issues can cause thyroid problems. Women, especially those older than 60, are more likely to have hypothyroidism. Symptoms of hypothyroidism can sometimes be similar to those experienced during menopause.

Why should thyroid issues be treated?

If hypothyroidism is left untreated, it can lead to problems such as heart disease, depression, high cholesterol, and osteoporosis. Plus, you may find that your diminished energy levels make it hard to function during normal day-to-day tasks.

Hyperthyroidism threatens the long-term health of your heart and greatly increase the risk of developing high blood pressure or having a heart attack.

How are thyroid problems diagnosed?

Dr. Bruton does a thorough review of your medical history and symptoms as well as blood tests to screen for thyroid imbalances. She measures both your TSH (thyroid stimulating hormone) as well as thyroxine (T4) and triiodothyronine (T3). The levels of these hormones help her diagnose a thyroid condition.

How are thyroid conditions treated?

Hyperthyroidism may be treated with medications, iodine, or surgery. Dr. Bruton addresses hypothyroidism with replacement hormones from natural sources. You may benefit from natural thyroid hormones or T3 replacement therapy.

Careful monitoring helps ensure you get just the right dose. If you experience heart palpitations, excessive sweating, anxiety, or shortness of breath, it’s likely your dose of thyroid replacement hormones is too high. When treated correctly with thyroid hormones, issues, such as fatigue, start to resolve in just a few weeks.

If you suspect you have a thyroid hormone imbalance, call Woman to Woman Gynecology or book an appointment online to be tested and have your symptoms resolved.